Sonoma soccer boys hosting Wednesday
Lady Dragons nipped by CN, depleted JVs triumph
Kicking off their season with another appearance in the annual Tamalpais/Santa Rosa-hosted Bay Cities Invitational on Friday and Saturday at Trione Fields in Santa Rosa, the Sonoma Valley High School varsity soccer boys faced three tough opponents and posted a 1-2 mark.
On Friday morning, the Dragons opened the tournament against Cardinal Newman and registered a 4-2 victory.
In Friday afternoon's match, the Sonoma boys fell 4-1 to nationally-ranked Granite Bay who wound up winning the 16-team tournament.
Then Saturday morning, the Dragons faced co-host Tamalpais and were shut out 3-0.
The Dragon boys will next host nonleague Ukiah at 4 p.m. tomorrow, Wednesday, Aug. 31, at the high school field, before hosting fellow Sonoma County League co-champion Analy in their SCL opener on Friday, Sept. 9, at 4 p.m. on the high school field.
The defending SCL co-champion 2011 Dragon varsity boys' soccer team - directed by head coach Pedro Merino and assistant coach Mike Linder - consists of seniors Iván Chávez, Diego Benítez, Jo-Jo Sánchez, Riley Clark, Ezequiél Vázquez, Yair Alvarez, Carlos Amezquita, Francisco Guerrero, Adalberto Jiménez, César Pino, Frankie Salazar, Victor Virgen and Manuel Young; juniors Stephan Flynn-García, Fidel García Sebastian Bustamante, Eric Gonzalez and Marvin Zamudio, Danny Dwyer, Isaac Garcia, Connor Grieggs-Demmin, Griffin Hill and Greg Maggioncalda; sophomores Andy Chavez, Alejandro Echeverria, Anthony Echeverria, Jose Lopez, Cesar Morales, Sachin Naidoo, Pablos Nieves, Bryan Ruiz, Jorge Sanchez, Jay Swisher and Zach Thompson.
Sonoma's busy varsity soccer girls hosted Cardinal Newman - consisting of former student-athlete girls from recently closed Ursuline - last Thursday at the high school field and battled hard before dropping a 1-0 decision.
As for Sonoma's junior varsity soccer girls, they pulled off an improbable feat last Thursday at the high school field by defying the odds stacked against them to deliver a triumph defined by desire, determination and outstanding defense.
Already hit by the early injury bug, the Lady Dragon jayvees fielded just enough players, 11, to complete the line-up card, while their opponent, Cardinal Newman, had a roster of 27 girls.
Sonoma then lost one of its top defensive players to injury 10 minutes into the match and now there were only 10 girls on the field, until 20 minutes into the second-half, when its midfielder was side-lined with dehydration and now there were just nine girls left to finish the match.
Through all the adversity, the jayvee Lady Dragons played inspired defense behind goalie Christen Silkey and, with less than 10 minutes left, stunned visiting Cardinal Newman with the eventual 1-0 match-winner when Rian Verdu's shot on-goal was blocked, with the ball bounding to Selena Gutierrez, who found the net for the score.
When the final whistle blew, the Sonoma girls, coaches and all the home fans were in a state of susbended jubilation.
The jayvee soccer Lady Dragons - directed by head coach Mike Verdu and assistant coach Brian Wirick - consist of seniors Anelyn Burquez and Denise Cavillo; juniors Gutierrez, Angelica Pena and Suleika Perez-Usher; sophomores Madi Burningham, Katy Marioni and Olivia Tsegeletos; and freshmen Silkey, Verdu, Alejandra Alvarez, Raegen Hedley, Shelley Marmaduke, Emily Miller and Alex Quackenbush.