Wildcats win first three matches before falling in championship match

The Taft varsity boys soccer team closed out their 2009 schedule with a bang on Friday Dec. 18 and Saturday,Dec.19 by finishing second in the silver division at the Garces Tournament in Bakersfield.

“We did well this tournament,” said Taft coach Cris Flores. “I am proud of my players.”

Taft got off to a strong start Friday afternoon by defeating Antelope Valley High School 2-0. The match was close through the first half of the match with the Wildcats hanging on to a 1-0 lead. Sostenes Mendoza and Rafael Heredia provided both of the goals in the match while the Wildcats took 13 shots.

The Wildcats kept their shutout streak going in the second match when they handed Frazier Mountain a 3-0 loss. Like the first match, the Wildcats held a 1-0 lead at the end of the first half before scoring two in the second to put the match away.

Overall, Heredia and Sostenes provided both of the goals for Taft with Jose Prieto assisting on both goals.

Taft had a tougher time in their semifinal match with the Wildcats and Burroughs battling to a 0-0 tie. Taft had a chance to score in regulation but Juan Arguello’s shot hit the post.

Finally Fernando Flores scored on the fifth penalty kick to outlast Burroughs 3-2 on penalty kicks.
With only two substitutes available, Taft’s run came to an end in the championship match when the Wildcats fell to Mission Prep by a score of 3-0.

Mission Prep didn’t wait long to get on the scoreboard with a goal in the first 20 minutes of the match on a penalty kick. The score was 1-0 until the second half when Mission Prep scored the final two goals to win by three.

Taft is currently in the midst of a two week break. The Wildcats will return to action Tuesday, Jan.5 when they take on Mira Monte at home. The following Friday, the Wildcats will square off against Mission Prep again at Mission Prep. Both matches begin at 6 p.m.