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Bulldogs blank RedHawks to advance
The Los Molinos and Colusa high school boys soccer teams kicked off the Division III playoffs on the pitch at McCamman Field in Los Molinos on Thursday.
The two teams were pretty closely matched, with the RedHawks coming in as the fifth-seeded team and the Bulldogs the No. 4. During the regular season Colusa won the first match 3-2, and the two sides also played to a scoreless draw.
Thursday's contest saw Los Molinos take a one-goal lead just before the halftime whistle and add two more goals in the second for a 3-0 victory.
"The RedHawks had many scoring opportunities throughout the game but just could not find the back of the net," said Colusa coach Dan Kiely.
The Bulldogs got on the board in the first half when Jose Gonzales lined up for a free kick. He was able to use his left foot to bend the ball around the RedHawks wall and into the lower-left corner of the net, past keeper Fernando Amador.
Colusa kept up the pressure in the second half, firing off 14 more shots, but Los Molinos goalie Ramon Pena got in front of or deflected them all to preserve the shutout.
In the 58th minute, the Bulldogs' Erick Hernandez persisted on an attack and it paid of when he lofted a shot over Amador and into the net to make it a 2-0 game.
Later in stoppage time, Hernandez was left un-marked in front of the net and rifled in his second goal of the game.
"We had a great season. Every player worked hard to improve their skills and learned to play as a team," Kiely said. "I am proud of every one of them."
The coach said Felipe Granados, Jorge Aguilera and Heraclio Lopez were halfback standouts, with Manuel Garcia and Ricardo Bautista playing strong at the forward position.
Amador made seven saves.
The RedHawks finished the year 10-7-4 overall and went 8-2-2 in the Mid-Valley League.
Felipe Martinez and Ricardo Heredia provided assists for the Bulldogs, who improved to 11-3-1 while earning their first playoff victory in four seasons.
Los Molinos played at top-seeded Willows on Tuesday.
CONTACT Craig Purcell at 824-1036 or firstname.lastname@example.org