FARMINGTON — The Aztec boys soccer team finding its rhythm at the right time.
After a tumultuous first half of the season when the Tigers were adjusting to and trying to find chemistry in a new system, Aztec has picked up back-to-back wins in the District 1-5A schedule after cruising past Bloomfield 10-1 today at Fred Cook Memorial Stadium in Aztec.
“We had a good game tonight. The guys have finally started to come together as a team,” Aztec coach Stephen Parks said. “I’m really pleased with how we’re playing, and our defense played really well. Mark Walters, Ruben Teasyatwho, Angelo Lucero and Trent Ketring, and Carson Colins in the goal are doing a great job for us.”
Six players scored for the Tigers (4-6-1, 2-0), and their first five goals of the night came from five different players. Francisco Villegas led the Tigers with three goals while Riley Barber and Juan Vargas added two goals apiece.
Bloomfield coach Scott Reid said the bulk of the Bobcats’ issues came from a lack of focus in the first half, but he was happy with the way the team responded in the second half.
“We’re young this year, and we’re going to take our licks, but I’m really proud of the way my boys fought back in the second half,” Reid said. “I wasn’t happy with how we played in the first half and got after them at halftime a little bit, and they responded. As a coach, you always want to take a positive away from the game, and the way they responded and fought in the second half is a big positive for us.”
Bloomfield’s goal came after the Bobcats (0-10-1, 0-2) were awarded a penalty kick in the second half. After an Aztec defender misplayed the ball on a bounce, the ball hit the player on the arm in the box, leading to the penalty. Senior captain Cameron Rhames took the penalty kick, putting it past the Aztec keeper.
Bloomfield will host Gallup (0-10, 0-2) on Tuesday.
Aztec will host Farmington (3-5, 2-0) on Tuesday.
Farmington 12, Kirtland Central 2
The Farmington boys soccer team took control in the second half and rolled past Kirtland Central 12-2 today in Kirtland.
“The first half, we were trying to get our feet underneath us and played all right. In the second half, we put in seven goals without letting any in,” Farmington coach Byron Farnsworth said. “Our passing looked excellent. It was one of those games when you have to play simple and let the ball do the work, and I think the boys did a really good job of that tonight.”
Yosmar Ruiz finished the night with three goals for Farmington (3-5, 2-0).
Farnsworth also praised the play of Hugo Gutierrez in the midfield, saying he and Ruiz complemented each other’s play throughout the game to open up scoring opportunities.
KC coach Noel Camacho said the Broncos (3-5, 0-2) had one of their best performances in the first half, but were worn out in the second half, leading to seven Farmington goals.
“Farmington is a tough team. They have good touch, and they’re quick, and I think my guys got worn out in the second half,” KC coach Noel Camacho said. “They did really good in the first half and scored a couple of goals, but they ran out of juice in the second half.”
Seth Puryear and Josiah Jenks scored the goals for KC.
KC will travel to Gallup on Tuesday to face Miyamura (2-8-1, 2-0).
Farmington will play at Aztec (4-6-1, 2-0) on Tuesday.
Bosque 3, Piedra Vista 0
The Piedra Vista boys soccer team couldn’t overcome first-half mistakes and fell to Bosque 3-0 today in Albuquerque.
“We made defensive mistakes in the first half,” PV coach Carlos Yllescas said. “I don’t want to make an excuse, but it was windy in the first half. The wind was a factor, and Bosque took advantage. But we have to be prepared for anything, including weather.”
Yllescas said the Panthers (6-5-1) played better in the second half, getting scoring opportunities against the Bobcats (5-6-2), but couldn’t finish the good looks they had.
PV will open play in District 1-6A on Saturday, hosting Cibola (5-3, 1-0 District 1-6A) at noon.
Karl Schneider is the sports editor for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4648.