YAKIMA, Wash. -- Having fought through so many extended, tight matches in the first half of the season, Davis’ boys soccer team has gotten used to such tension.
Even when the Pirates had matters well in hand on Tuesday, the final minutes took them quickly back to that life-on-the-edge norm.
Cruising along with a dominant three-goal lead, Davis conceded a pair of goals at the end of regulation and in injury time but still came away with a 3-2 victory over West Valley to start the second half of the CBBN season.
While his crew completed a sweep of West Valley, which had won four of its last five, and improved to 5-2 in league on its home field, coach Jerry Cole had plenty of praise mixed with stern words for the second-place Pirates.
“That’s a lesson in staying focused, giving away those two late goals,” said Cole, who took over as head coach after serving as an assistant since 1994. “We’re still growing and adjusting to a new coaching style. But every single day it’s getting better.”
For the bulk of play, Davis controlled the match, pressuring the Rams’ net consistently through the first half before breaking through with Isaac Guzman’s tally in the final minute before halftime.
After an own goal in the 60th minute, the Pirates got what proved to be the winner on Christian Torres’ goal with 10 minutes left in regulation.
It was a convincing follow-up to Davis’ 1-0 win at West Valley on March 17, but in the final hectic minutes the Rams managed to knock in two goals — Julian Lee’s shot in the 79th minute and Brandon Rueda’s penalty kick during injury time.
For a team that has been involved in three overtimes, two shootouts and a scoreless tie, Davis finally had a little breathing room on Tuesday. Two of those overtimes represent the Pirates’ two league losses — 2-1 to Wenatchee and 4-3 to CBBN unbeaten Eastmont in two OTs.
“Those were matches we all felt we certainly could have won. We had chances to put them both away,” Cole noted. “But we’re working hard on scoring more, that’s our weakness. We are trying to control the ball and be aggressive, which we did today. We just need to score more goals.”
The Pirates (5-2 league, 7-3-1 overall) will get their next opportunity on Friday at Eisenhower, a team Davis outlasted 2-1 — in overtime, of course — three weeks ago.
West Valley (3-4, 7-4) resumes CBBN play on Friday hosting Wenatchee.
First half: 1, Davis, Isaac Guzman (Gabriel Galindo), 39:30.
Second half: 2, Davis, own goal, 60:00; 3, Davis, Christian Torres, 70:00; 4, WV, Julian Lee, 79:00; 5, WV, Brandon Rueda (PK), 81:00.
Saves: Cuauhtemoc Munguia (D) 4, Christian Ruiz (D) 1, Devin Duthie (WV) 6.