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CIF-SS boys soccer semifinals: Tuesday's games
JSERRA (18-6-3) vs. SAN CLEMENTE (28-2-1)
Site, time: San Clemente, 5 p.m.
Outlook: Top-seeded San Clemente has quite possibly the best forward in the county in Gage Zerboni. The UCLA-bound Zerboni has set a single-season school record for assists (20) and goals (30). In three playoff games, he has five goals and five assists. To win this game, the Tritons are going to have to find a way to slow down the Lions' Ether Bustos and Jonathan Fabulich. They played a role in two of the three goals the Lions scored last week with Bustos scoring off a Fabulich assist.
SERVITE (13-8-8) vs. LOYOLA OF L.A.
Site, time: Servite, 3:30 p.m.
Outlook: On paper, this matchup against the second-seeded Cubs looks like a mismatch for the Friars. Servite shut out third-seeded El Toro for the first time this season. Not any easy task considering the Chargers scored 80 goals this season. First-year coach Jon Spencer has made defense a priority for the Friars, who have given up only one goal in more than 260 minutes of playoff soccer. Friars defenders must have another stellar game for them to make it to the championship. Loyola hasn't scored fewer than two goals in any playoff games it has played.
LOARA (14-5-4) vs.
ROYAL of SIMI VALLEY (20-2-4)
Site, time: Loara, 3:15 p.m.
Outlook: The Saxons started the playoffs as a wild card, earning an at-large berth as the fourth-place team in the Golden West League. And to get into the semifinals, the Saxons had to first go on the road in the quarterfinals to face top-seeded Santiago of Corona. The Saxons won, 1-0, with Luis Aguayo scoring. Royal has yet to give up a goal in this postseason, outscoring its opponents, 4-0.
EL RANCHO OF PICO RIVERA (24-2-1) vs. CENTURY (14-9-4)
Site, time: Century, 3:30
Outlook: The Centurions have quite possibly the hottest goal-scoring forward in the playoffs in Ronaldo Pineda. He scored five goals last week, including all four in the Centurions' 4-2 quarterfinal victory against Oxnard. He has seven goals in three playoff games. But Century boys soccer coach Bruce Silverman said he believes the team's potent offense starts in the defensive third with the Centurions' flat four formation. These teams last met in the championship match of the North Orange County Championships last season with El Rancho leaving with an easy victory. This will be a tough one too for the Centurions as El Rancho has scored no fewer than five goals in any of its playoff games.
GODINEZ (15-2-4) vs. SAN JACINTO (22-1-3)
Site, time: San Jacinto, 5 p.m.
Outlook: The Orange Coast League champion Grizzlies will face the division's top seed today, but that doesn't mean that Godinez doesn't have a chance. San Jacinto has given up four goals in its past two games while the Grizzlies have outscored their opponents, 5-0, during that span. The Grizzlies are led by Andrew Soriano, who has five goals and one assist in three playoff games. He is coming off a three-goal game against Marshall Fundamental in the quarterfinals.
SADDLEBACK (15-4-4) vs. SILVERADO OF
Site, time: Silverado, 5 p.m.
Outlook: The Roadrunners are trying to make it to a championship match for the first time since 2008, and will face the No. 3 seed today. But Silverado is beatable, having given up at least one goal in all three of its playoff games. The Roadrunners are led by one of the top goal scorers in the county – Mario Guerrero. He has scored 20 goals this season, four of them coming in the playoffs. He has scored in all three playoff games the Roadrunners have played this month.