December 17, 2017
SAN JOSE - Senior Grant King scored on a free kick in the 77th minute to cap a second-half comeback and lift host Branham to a 3-2 win over Mountain View in a non-league boys soccer match Friday night.
King buried a free kick from 40 yards out near the left sideline, perfectly placing the ball inside the right post on a bounce as the Bruins (2-2) completed a comeback from a 2-0 deficit against the Spartans (3-4).
It was the third time this season Mountain View dropped a game in the final five minutes, with two of the defeats coming in stoppage time.
"This was a big win for us," said Branham head coach Danny Kadah. "We know that Mountain View is a perennial playoff team, so this gives us confidence heading into the winter break and into our league season."
Mountain View took a 1-0 lead in the fourth minute when senior midfielder Winston Shustock picked up a loose ball near midfield on his own half of the field and raced all the way into the Branham penalty area on a solo run, ripping a shot to the left corner past goalkeeper Tanner Lanphear.
The Spartans almost extended the lead just a few minutes later when they stole a bad pass in Branham territory and got the ball to senior Manual Rozay for a one-on-one opportunity. But Rozay's shot missed just wide of the left post.
Branham nearly tied the game in the first 10 minutes but Mountain View goalkeeper Osmin Quijano, who finished with 11 saves, made a double save to deny Angel Avalos and Dante Reinoso in quick succession. Later in the first half, he made a reflex save on a point-blank header from Reinoso off a King free kick.
The Spartans went up 2-0 in the 22nd minute on an opportunity initially set up by Rozay, who beat a defender down the left side. His cross richocheted to senior Ozzy Ortiz, who laid the ball off to senior midfielder Ben Lau, who placed a first-time shot into the lower left corner from 27 yards out.
"Even down 2-0 at halftime, we felt we were still in the match because we were creating chances," said Kadah. "But it's tough to put yourself in a hole against such a well-organized and athletic team."
The Bruins got on the board in the 55th minute on a free kick near midfield. King lofted the ball into the box and junior defender Aaron Lenz latched onto it with a header into the right corner to make it 2-1.
Branham tied the match in the 64th minute when Reinoso headed a well-placed corner kick by sophomore Lucas Cuellar from the right side.
Both teams have one more non-league test December 28 against undefeated opponents before heading into league play in the new year. Branham visits Cupertino (6-0-1) while Mountain View welcomes in Serra (3-0-1).