Although there were a few notable upsets in the first round of the CCS boys soccer playoffs, all the No. 1 seeds advanced into the semifinals.
Archbishop Mitty defeated Santa Clara 3-2 behind a hat trick from Nicholas Coldiron. Mitty held a 3-0 lead for much of the second half before the Bruins scored two last-minute goals in the second half to make for a tense finish.
No. 7 seed Alvarez defeated Homestead on the road Saturday 2-0, scoring both of its goals in the final 10 minutes. Alvarez will make another long trip to the South Bay Wednesday for a semifinal matchup against Mitty. The two teams met last year at this same stage of the competition when Mitty defeated Alvarez in penalties in the Division 2 semifinals in Salinas.
Top-seeded Salinas, a 3-2 winner over Lincoln, will take on Gunn in the other semifinal. Both teams are champions of their respective "B" leagues, with Salinas having more than enough CCS points to qualify for the Open Division but unable to do so. A rule change was instituted a few years ago forbidding "B" teams from leagues that have an "A" league from competing.
Top-seeded Branham rolled to a comfortable 3-0 victory over Los Gatos. Carter Thompson scored on a shot from the top of the box one minute into the game. Branham made it 2-0 in the 33rd minute on a combination from Jaeson Gonzalez, who played the ball wide right to Ian Hutt. The sophomore then hit a low cross to the back post for a tap-in by Kenneth Esquivias.
Gonzalez closed out the scoring just before the end of regulation on a penalty kick after a strong run by Hutt resulted in a foul in the box. Branham will host No. 5 Wilcox, which edged Burlingame 1-0 in the quarterfinals. It will be a rematch of a game that took place December 11 when Wilcox defeated Branham 1-0 during non-league action.
Two BVAL schools from different divisions will face off the other semifinal. Leigh came from behind to defeat Los Altos 2-1 and Mt. Pleasant won 2-0 at Carlmont. The Scots managed to hold Mt. Pleasant star forward Ricardo Tovar Herrera (28 goals) scoreless, but the Cardinals still advanced. The two teams are expected to play in the BVAL-Mount Hamilton next season.
Sequoia will host Harker in one semifinal after defeating Capuchino 4-2 in the semifinals. Sequoia is paced by junior Jacob Burrill, who has 11 goals on the season.
Saint Francis, the fourth-place finisher in the WCAL, advanced to the semifinals after defeating Sequel. St. Francis is led offensively by Rory Forlan and defensively by Abraham Ramirez. Top-seeded Menlo, runner-up to Sacred Heart Prep in the WBAL, advanced to the semifinal after cruising by Pajaro Valley 4-0.
Top seed and undefeated Summit Prep looks to be the team to beat in Division 4 after handling Yerba Buena by a score of 4-0. All four goals for the Huskies came in the second half with junior Pedro Ontiveras scoring a brace. Summit Prep will face King City, which defeated Latino College Prep 2-0.
Del Mar, winner of the BVAL-West Valley Division, advanced to the semifinals by defeating Seaside 4-3 in a thriller in San Jose. The Dons will host North Salinas, which dispatched oSoquel 5-0. North Salinas is paced by Ezequiel Hernandez who leads his team with seven goals.