After starting off the season going 1-4-2 in its first seven
games, the Live Oak boys soccer team has improved its play and
record during the final stretch of the season.
Morgan Hill – After starting off the season going 1-4-2 in its first seven games, the Live Oak boys soccer team has improved its play and record during the final stretch of the season.
The Acorns won 2-0 against Pioneer on Tuesday, giving Live Oak its second win the last six games. With a tough schedule against some of the top teams in the Blossom Valley Athletic League Mount Hamilton Division, Live Oak has gone 3-2-3 in its last eight games.
“Going in, we were hoping for a win or a good game,” said Live Oak coach Tony Goble.
On Tuesday, the teams went back and forth with shots at the goalkeepers but couldn’t put anything on the scoreboard in the first half.
Live Oak senior goalie Sheldon Steenhuis kept the Mustangs from scoring with a solid first half in goal. Steenhuis punched, kicked and smothered any ball that came near him.
Goble felt that his team let Pioneer stay too close in the first half of the game.
“We played pretty flat,” Goble said. “We didn’t show up. We had a couple good opportunities on goal, but they didn’t go in.”
Goble said that Pioneer is a difficult team to beat, even though the Mustangs have the worst record in the division.
“Sometimes these are the hardest teams to beat,” Goble said. “They have nothing on the line. They don’t care if they give up a couple of goals, they just want to get that first goal. You can see the confidence build in them when you keep a team like that around.”
The Acorns responded in the second half by playing with more intensity on offense.
Early in the second half, Live Oak’s hard work paid off in the Pioneer zone when the Acorns earned a corner kick.
After the ball came into the box, a scrum for the ball ensued with junior midfielder Spencer Razouk getting his head on the ball and putting it in the net.
Live Oak didn’t fall back and play to protect the lead after going up 1-0. Instead, the Acorns kept attacking the Mustangs’ half of the field.
Casey Mott added an insurance goal later in the second half to put the Acorns. Mott’s hard shot deflected off the goalkeeper’s hands and into the net.
Pioneer went into desperation mode late in the half as their players came further into the Live Oak zone. Steenhuis stopped two shots late in the game to secure the victory.
After the game, Acorns coach Tony Goble praised his goalie’s play and leadership in net for Live Oak.
“He’s a big-time keeper,” Goble said. “We are definitely going to miss him next year. As a senior, he is a true leader. It’s like having a fifth defender back there.”
The Acorns final game of the season is Tuesday against Yerba Buena in San Jose.