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Bears soccer deals double down to Durham
Although both teams went 79 minutes without scoring a goal, it was a Pierce High goal in the first minute that stood the test of time in Arbuckle on Thursday, as the Lady Bears made it stand for a 1-0 Sacramento Valley League-1 victory over Durham.
Pierce took the home pitch with a record of 4-2-1 and a 1-1 mark in league play, while the Trojans came in winless at 0-3-3 and 0-0-1.
While gametime temperatures were unseasonably warm and breezy, the Lady Bears' Marrissa Espino had no problem cutting through the wind.
After Pierce's first shot attempt was steered out of bounds by the Durham keeper, Espino powered up her right leg for the ensuing corner kick and lofted the ball in front of the Trojan goal, where midfielder Melissa Martinez headed it home for the 1-0 lead that would stand until the final whistle.
"We had opportunity after opportunity, but it is what it is," said Pierce coach Duffy Bailey. "We're good off the corner and (Espino) has a good leg and can actually score from there. We got a header."
The Pierce midfielder and defenders worked well together, keeping any Durham advances to a minimum and limiting the number of opportunities the Trojans got for a clear look at the goal.
Bears goalie Brenda Leos was seldom tested, although she did need to leap and make a finger-tip stop in front of the Pierce net in 18th minute of the second half to preserve the shutout.
Freshman midfielder Giselle Vera had a chance to make it a 2-0 lead in the first half, but her hard shot from out front sailed just above the cross bar to keep it a one-goal game.
Bailey was happy with the end result, saying, "All in all it was a good game. We played as a team, and kept in formation and played in space. We played a complete soccer game."
In the boys contest, it was Fernando Saavedra scoring all three goals in the first half for a hat trick and a 3-1 victory.
CONTACT Craig Purcell at 824-1036 or email@example.com. Like us on Facebook at TCN Sports; follow us on Twitter @TCNvarsity