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Bulldogs lose league opener
THS soccer pic1
Marcus DeCouto and a Buhach defender close in on the ball during the Thunders 2-1 victory over Turlock on Monday. - photo by FRANKIE TOVAR / The Journal

Last soccer season, Turlock High claimed the Central California Conference crown while Buhach Colony High managed only one win in a league campaign that landed the Thunder last in CCC standings.

On Monday, the defending CCC champs hosted Buhach in the 2013 league opener and were surprised to find out things had changed. Turlock struggled against, and ultimately fell to, the Thunder who netted three goals—two of which were in their favor—en route to a 2-1 upset victory.

Turlock had trouble keeping the ball away from the Thunder for most of the match and was forced to play from behind early when Hector Maldonado notched the first goal of the day in the 5th minute. While Buhach was able to set the tempo and assert control over Turlock, a miscue in the 9th minute temporarily leveled the playing field as an Erik Heikkila pass to his goalie missed its target and rolled into the Thunder’s own goal. The mistake made it 1-1 at the half.

Turlock put itself in position to take the lead several times but was unable to capitalize on its opportunities. Buhach sealed its victory in the second half with a Jose Ramirez goal, handing Turlock its second consecutive loss.

Turlock plays at home again today against Atwater High.