AZTEC — The Aztec girls soccer team started its season with a pair of wins.
The hosts knocked off Miyamura 4-0 in the first round of the Lady Tiger Shootout, then topped Los Lunas by the same score in the semifinals Friday at the Aztec Sports Complex.
Both games were a tale of two halves. The Lady Tigers dominated the first half against Miyamura and became sluggish in the second half. Against Los Lunas, Aztec came out flat and entered halftime in a scoreless tie, then came out in the second half and dominated.
"We were just dead. They didn't want to move. Just real lethargic. We just looked horrible the first half," Aztec head coach Kelly Kelso said of the Los Lunas match.
Aztec didn't take long to get things going in the second half with Devyn Martinez putting the Lady Tigers on the board with a free kick coming just outside the box on the left side.
The goal opened the scoring spree.
Kenzie Gomez got behind the Los Lunas defense and beat the goalkeeper to make it 2-0. Two minutes later, Ashlyn Bradley found the back of the net to extend the Aztec lead to 3-0.
Ashlee Garcia capped things off with the final goal of the game.
"We made a few changes in the second half," Kelso said. "We didn't do a lot, just moved a few players here and there, and started getting productive. We got production from a lot of different people."
With the wins, Aztec moves into the final, where it will meet defending state champion St. Pius X (2-0) at 4 p.m. today at the Aztec Sports Complex.
PV falls to St. Pius X in semifinals
Piedra Vista got away from its game in the first half and dug too deep a hole against St. Pius X (2-0), eventually falling 6-1 in the semifinals of the Lady Tiger Shootout at the Aztec Sports Complex.
"We're building up to wanting to play like them (St. Pius) with a lot of passes and a lot of quick touches, but we forgot to be athletic," PV head coach Adam Huff said. "The second half we got a lot of opportunities because I told them to go be athletic and use their speed."
The Lady Panthers (0-1) advanced to the semis after Desert Academy forfeited its match in the first round after just six players made the trip. Huff said the two teams are trying to reschedule the match for later in the season rather than counting the forfeit as a win.
St. Pius jumped out on the Lady Panthers early and held a 5-0 lead at the half.
In the second half, PV got back to its game and found a few chances with its attack, culminating in a Makeyan Kalmbach goal on a free kick late in the second half.
PV will play Los Lunas in the third-place game at 2 p.m. today at the Aztec Sports Complex.
KCHS splits first two games
After battling Los Lunas (1-1) to a 1-0 loss in the first round of the Lady Tiger Shootout, Kirtland Central bounced back with a 3-1 win over Miyamura in the consolation bracket at the Aztec Sports Complex.
The Lady Broncos (1-1) suffered a major blow in the first 10 minutes of the Los Lunas match when senior forward Kayce Culler broke the radius and ulna of her left arm.
"That's going to hurt us pretty bad," KCHS head coach Chad Kimball said of the injury. "She is one of our best strikers and for her to go out like that in the first game of the year, that's a pretty big blow to us."
KCHS bounced back in the Miyamura (0-2) match, getting two goals from junior midfielder Tigger Begay and one goal from sophomore Christine Young.
"We don't have a whole lot of depth on our bench, so the girls really stepped up and did a good job today," Kimball said.
KCHS will face Bloomfield in the consolation bracket finals today at 10 a.m.
Bloomfield (1-1) fell to 5A power St. Pius X (2-0) 11-1 in its first-round game to fall to the consolation bracket. The Lady Bobcats advanced to the consolation final after Desert Academy was forced to forfeit again.