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Photo by Ray Robles
The Lady Aztecs' Angelique Leatham plays the ball in a recent match at Barstow High School.

Barstow shuts out VV

Lady Aztecs soccer in first place in DSL

BARSTOW • The Barstow girls soccer team surpassed last year’s win total early in the season. Now there are loftier goals to shoot for.

The Lady Aztecs hosted Victor Valley in their latest match, and handed the Jackrabbits a 5-0 blanking on Thursday afternoon at Barstow High School.

The Lady Aztecs have quietly been mastering their opponents this season. Though Granite Hills has the reputation and was expected by many to take the Desert Sky League crown, the Lady Cougars held a 4-0-3 league record going into Thursday’s game. Barstow is now 8-5-3, 5-1-1 and in first place in the DSL.

“We were a little slow today, but we controlled the action,” said Barstow head coach Frank Maldonado. “We weren’t as aggressive as we should be and didn’t pass as much as we should, but we did well enough. On every fifth shot, we scored.”

Indeed, the Lady Aztecs totaled 20 shots on goal over the course of the match. Barstow began peppering Lady Jackrabbits keeper Daniela Montoya immediately and never let up in the first half. Many different Lady Aztecs had their chances, with Hannah Ramirez taking the first shot in the game’s first minute, which Montoya deflected.

Lexyss Aviles had her shot caught, after making a nice move around a defender, and Kortnee Brown hit the side of the net in the first 10 minutes. At 12 minutes in, Barstow got on the board. Anna Alvarado got control of the ball off a corner kick and sent in a shot over the head of Montoya. In the next few minutes, Brown got off two more shots, one just high and one wide, before connecting for Barstow’s second tally.

Those were the only goals of the first half, though Angelique Leatham did her best to score, getting off three shots, two of which were caught. Ramirez and Alyssa Sanchez both shot just wide, and Jasmine Ceballos had her shot caught by Montoya.

“Their goalie did a great job,” said coach Maldonado. “We threw a lot at her.”

In the second half, Brown picked up where she left off, scoring from about 30 yards out at the halfway mark. The last two goals both came from Aviles. Sanchez took a shot with 15 minutes left that Montoya deflected, with the ball landing near Aviles, who chipped it over the line. Then with six minutes to go, the ball was cleared out of the Aztecs’ zone after a corner kick, with Aviles corralling it at midfield and scoring on the rush.

There was also some nice defense in the second. The Lady Jackrabbits had possession more often than in the first half, but twice were prevented from rushing the net. Biance Berry foiled an attacker early in the half, staying on her heels and managing to kick the ball away before a shot could be taken, and Autianya Leatham did the same later on.

Barstow keeper Yessica Morales faced four shots. Valley is still looking for its first win of the season.

While very happy with the win and with occupying first place, there are a few things Maldonado wants his team to work on.

“We seem to play according to our competition. We don’t have that killer instinct,” said the coach. “I told the girls, we can’t play like we did today against strong teams. We have to be just as aggressive, even with weaker teams.”

The Lady Aztecs’ next test is coming up on Tuesday, when Adelanto comes to town. Next Thursday brings a match at Silverado.

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