The regular season for varsity boys soccer is in full swing for Turlock Christian and Denair High and on Tuesday, both squads took to the pitch for the first time in a preseason contest.
Both transitioning with the change from fall to winter looked smooth after Tuesday's contest, especially the Coyotes from Denair who shutout the Eagles of TC in a 5-0 final from Monte Vista Chapel.
“The score didn't reflect how we played, I think it was a much closer game than that,” said TC first year head coach Tevin Jones.
“We played well; second string scored two goals. You have to love when the second stringers score, everyone passed well, we looked good and created good space,” said Denair head coach Greg Gaudio.
With just two games under their belt, the Coyotes improve to 2-0, having won both contests by shutouts after blanking Argonaut last Thursday in a 2-0 final.
“I think the big thing for me is I had 15 guys last year and this year I have 23 soccer players, so what are my expectations? Well at least I have enough for a team from start to finish,” said Gaudio. “I don't think I have to worry about it until grades come out, then I will know for sure but until then I have numbers, I feel good about it.”
Denair looked like a determined group with high energy that hopes to compete not just in preseason but also in league.
Denair went up 1-0 in the first half after sophomore Luis Dominguez headed in the first goal of the game, after a Cesar Flores cross on the far end to break the lead wide open at just the 13-minute mark.
TC was able to fend off Denair for the remainder of the first half as both sides went into their halftime break with the score at 1-0.
Denair sophomore Trent Hullbert followed up with a goal at the 45th minute to take a 2-0 lead, kicking off a Coyotes offensive surge.
From there on, Denair punched in three more goals with the final score coming from Luis Fuentes with under five minutes remaining.
TC goalkeeper Gyuha Hwang finished with a staggering 15 saves for the game.
“I felt our goalkeeper played great,” said Jones. “I am so proud, plus our preseason we have tough matches, bigger schools and that tells us what we need to work on to get ready for league that way. We learned a lot from it. We need to work on possession of the ball and transition into offense.”
The next game for the 1-2 TC Eagles will be against Le Grand on the road at 6 p.m. Thursday.
Denair's next game will be at the Ripon Christian soccer tournament starting Friday against an opponent yet to be named at a time yet to be determined.