SAN FRANCISCO — Sometimes the best defense is a good offense.
Rather than sit back and try to protect a lead, as most soccer teams do, especially in a win-or-go-home playoff game, the Sacred Heart Cathedral boys soccer team attacked, then attacked some more in a convincing 6-0 victory over Leland to advance to the CCS Open Division Championship Game.
“We definitely pride ourselves on playing a bit differently than a lot of other high school teams,” head coach Mike McNeill said following the convincing win.
Leading 2-0 at halftime on goals by Diego Grande and freshman Cruz Medina, top-seeded Sacred Heart Cathedral (9-0-0) sealed the victory not by parking the bus on defense but by continuing to press on.
Sophomore Angel Iniguez scored in the 51st minute off a Donte Yasukawa assist, then added another three minutes later as Medina set up Javan Mendiola. Donovan Brasch, another sophomore, finished off a beautiful cross in the 68th minute and Matteo Tevarotto added one more in the 73rd for the final margin.
With Yasukawa, a JV callup, joining six sophomores that were already on the roster and Medina heading a promising freshman class, it’s fair to assume that Friday morning’s championship against Bellarmine, set for 11 a.m. at the Beach Chalet Soccer Fields, won’t be SHC’s last time playing for a title with this core.
“The future’s so bright with this group,” McNeill said. “To get this experience is invaluable moving forward.”