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Santa Margarita bounces back with dominating effort
After a disappointing end to their quest for a CIF-SS Division 1 title, Santa Margarita rebounded with a dominant effort to kick off another CIF championship quest.
Sophomore Kassidy Gorman scored two goals and added an assist, as the Eagles routed Arleta, 7-0, in the first round of the CIF Southern California Division 2 Regional Championships on Tuesday at Santa Ana Stadium.
“We were disappointed with our loss last week and we came out focused and ready to play,” Gorman said. “We’re all excited to move on to Thursday.”
Santa Margarita (17-5-3), which lost in penalty kicks in the semifinals of the CIF-SS Division 1 playoffs to eventual champion Aliso Niguel, advances to Thursday’s semifinal round. The Eagles will be host to St. Lucy’s of Glendora at Santa Ana Stadium.
The Eagles lost to Coronado, 2-0, in the semifinals of last year’s Division 2 tournament and Coach Chuck Morales feels this year’s team is better equipped to have a better showing.
“We still have a lot to prove,” Morales said. “We are a year smarter, more experienced, and a better all-around team than we were last year. We just have to find our rhythm and go at people.”
The Eagles wasted little time in seizing control of the match. In the first minute, sophomore Danielle Scelsi fed junior teammate Bryce Ziemer, who tapped a shot past Mustangs senior goalie Tiffany Tobar to make it 1-0.
One minute later, Gorman sliced a crossing pass through the middle of the box for fellow sophomore Heather Walleigh, who sent a shot into the back of the net to give the Eagles a 2-0 lead.
In the fourth minute, senior Alaina Arthur found space in the box and chipped a shot past Rodriguez to increase the lead to 3-0.
Gorman rebounded her own shot that was initially saved by Rodriguez in the ninth minute and blasted the follow-up into back of the net to give Santa Margarita a 4-0 lead.
Later in the half, Gorman added her second goal of the match with a left-footed shot in the box that sailed into the far post corner of the goal.
Scelsi capped the first-half scoring spree when she received a pass from sophomore McKenna Roth and buried a shoot past Rodriguez.
Sophomore Kennedy Kraft put the final goal of the match on the board in the second half.
In a CIF SoCal Regional Division 1 match:
Aliso Niguel 1, Claremont 0: Senior Alexa Watkins tallied the lone goal of the match in the first half, as the Wolverines (21-1-4) knocked off the Wolfpack (30-2-2) at Aliso Niguel.
The Wolverines will be host to El Camino Real of Woodland Hills in Thursday’s semifinal round.
The Conquistadors defeated Buchanan High, 5-0, in a first-round match at El Camino Real.
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