Aztec battles Belen to 1-1 draw
FARMINGTON — The Aztec and Belen boys soccer teams put on a spectacle for the fans at Fred Cook Memorial Stadium tonight in Aztec.
The match ended in a 1-1 draw after the two sides battled through regulation and overtime.
“It was nice to see the team start to jell together and work together,” Aztec coach Stephen Parks said. “There were some things that we need to work on, but overall, I’m really pleased with the progress we’re making and where we’re at.”
The Tigers (2-4-1) struck first. After working the ball down the right side of the field, Malakai Garcia played into Francisco Villegas, who got his left foot on the ball to direct it into the back of the next.
Belen (2-1-1) recorded the equalizer in the final moments of the first half on a strike from just outside the box.
The two sides battled back and forth through the second half, with both getting scoring opportunities, but neither side could break through.
“Carson Collins had an outstanding game. He made some great saves for us in goal and has just been playing great for us,” Parks said of his goalie.
The Tigers had a chance to win the game in overtime. Pedro Lucero made a run down the left side and cut back toward the middle of the field when he was taken down in the box to draw a penalty. Villegas took the penalty kick, but Belen’s keeper guessed right and made a great save.
The Tigers will get some much-needed practice time before their next match on Tuesday when they travel to Farmington to play Piedra Vista (4-3). After Parks took over the team one week before the season started, the Tigers have played seven games and have only had time for six practices.
Piedra Vista 10, Bloomfield 0
The Piedra Vista boy soccer team got an early goal against Bloomfield and used the momentum to carry the Panthers to a 10-0 victory tonight at Bobcat Stadium in Bloomfield.
Bloomfield coach Scott Reid said PV drew a penalty about five minutes into the match. After PV (4-3) connected on the penalty kick, Reid said the Bobcats (0-4-1) lost their focus, almost giving up on the day.
“I kind of feel like no one really wanted it tonight,” Reid said. “PV did a good job dominating. After we let in that first goal, we kind of hung our heads and let in another one and another one. It was really a domino effect after that.”
While Bloomfield faded, PV never relented. PV coach Carlos Yllescas said he was proud of the Panthers’ ability to play with a high intensity through the entire match.
“That’s what we’re trying to do. No matter who we’re playing, we want to have the same intensity every game,” Yllescas said. “The kids are starting to recognize that we need to finish the game strong after we lost a couple close games after giving up late goals.”
Yllescas said no one individual stood out in the win but that the team worked very well as a group to create its scoring chances.
PV will host Miyamura (0-4-1) on Thursday.
Bloomfield will travel to Cortez, Colo., on Thursday to face Montezuma-Cortez (0-1).
Karl Schneider is the sports editor for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4648.