Pitman High passed its first playoff test on Tuesday with a 3-1 victory over Franklin High’s girls soccer team. The Pride controlled the majority of the game as they battled the Yellowjackets from Stockton under the glowing sun.
“They were an unknown and we were at home so we wanted to play as best we could,” Pitman’s head coach Oscar Mercado said. “It was hot but he team was confident and they did their job.”
Pitman’s confidence could be seen in the faces of its players, Marissa Marable’s in particular. After scoring Pitman’s first goal in the first half, Marable returned for another taste of the net in the beginning of the second half, capping a chain of Pitman passes down the middle of the field with a right-footed kick that sent the ball into the left side of the goal.
“She is smart, has good vision as well as ambition,” Mercado said. “We’re fortunate to have her on our side.”
Pitman kept its foot on the gas despite their lead, taking frequent shots on Franklin and defending their own goal with vigor. The Pride’s aggressiveness flustered Franklin and eventually resulted in a Pitman penalty kick. Katie Hanf stepped up to the ball and sent it into the left corner of the net for Pitman’s third goal of the day.
Even though Pitman seized control of the game early on, Franklin remained lively and highly competitive. The Yellowjackets, in their first playoff appearance in school history, finally transferred their enthusiasm onto the field in the final five minutes, scoring their lone goal and saving face.
Pitman will now move on to the second round of the CIF SJS Playoffs against Enochs High. The Pride and Eagles met during pre-season competition where Enochs won 2-0.
“The circumstances were different then,” Mercado said. “We’re talking pre-season compared to playoffs. I’m sure both teams will be ready.”
The second round matchup will be played in Modesto at Enochs High. The time has yet to be determined.