Story by Noah Kuhn
Associate News Editor
Photo by Sean Jin
Girls soccer lost its sixth straight league match, 3-2, against Temple City on Friday, Jan. 31. The Tigers drops to a 5-11-3 overall record and 0-6 in the Rio Hondo League.
The first half was action-packed with five goals between the two teams. Play moved back and forth frequently on both final thirds, with each side committing to the attack.
The final 40 minutes were considerably less intense; neither team netted a goal. While South Pas scored first, it couldn’t carry that momentum throughout the entire game, succumbing to the Rams 3-2.
South Pas kicked off to a terrific start, scoring in the third minute. After a throw in, senior Andrea Castellanos utilized her dribbling skills to create a pocket of space for herself five yards out. In the midst of congestion, she fired the ball into the top left corner.
Minutes later, Temple City equalized after chipping the ball over junior keeper Andrea Zarazua on a breakaway. The Tigers struggled to prevent the Rams’ attack due to their quick passing and physicality. However, freshman Daniella Lat proved a brick wall as the Tiger’s final defender through her speed and strong clearances.
Temple City continued to beat South Pas to 50-50 balls, netting another shot into the top left corner. Senior captain Chloe Kim helped pull the Tigers back together and served as an anchor in the midfield, bridging the gap between defense and offense.
In the 21st minute, the Tigers equalized. Castellanos dribbled aggressively up the left wing and passed to senior captain Corey Segal. Segal crossed the ball into the box, right where junior Kate Buckley was waiting unmarked and squarely headed the ball into the net.
South Pas’ attack slowed down after Buckley’s header and was forced to play a defensive game for the rest of the half. Junior defensive midfielder Ava Carbonara guarded the Tiger goal by blocking long balls and redirecting them upfield.
Still, Temple City scored on a corner kick as a Ram tapped the ball in after it got lost in a sea of players. Castellanos had a few more scoring opportunities before the halftime whistle but nothing came out of it; the first half ended with South Pas trailing, 3-2.
The Rams’ long ball offensive strategy wore down the Tigers and prevented them from creating many strong chances going forward in the second half. Gameplay remained on the Tiger half and Zarazua dove numerous times to save breakaways, keeping a clean sheet in the final 40 minutes.
South Pas picked it up towards the end of the game, but following their season-long trend, they failed to finish and opportunities, losing to Temple City, 3-2.
“I think that each of us needs to play as a team instead of as individual players and realize why we love the game we play and play it for those reasons,” Zarazua said. “I think that would bring a stronger desire to not only play, but to work to improve as a team.”
Girls soccer hopes to score its first league win in their penultimate RHL match against Monrovia on the road on Tuesday, Feb. 4.