SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. -- No emotion and no offense. It was a lost day for the Carson High boys soccer squad.
In a battle of unbeaten Sierra League teams, South Tahoe carried the game to the Senators, who responded poorly and dropped a 4-0 decision Saturday afternoon at South Tahoe Middle School.
"They are clearly better than we are at this point," Carson coach Jason Koop said. "Nothing (emotionally). They obviously wanted it more. They were getting to the 50-50 balls more. They took advantage of their opportunities.
"I don't like to make excuses, but we're still pretty hurt."
Indeed. Carson played without six starters - Royal Good, Zach Weisman, Sam Rojas, Micah Laack, Ramay Nunez and Mats Boehnke. Rojas was at a family function, and while Good was cleared to play after his concussion, Koop decided to rest him anyway.
Who knows whether it would have made a difference. The only way to tell is if Carson gets any of those players back in time for the rematch later in the season at Carson.
The stats clearly tell the story. South Tahoe outshot Carson 16-6, and except for Brady Roser's shot off the crossbar at the 67th minute, the Senators struggled. The Senators managed only two shots on goal in the first half thanks to the efforts of Matt Thompson and Ismael Mora, the Vikings' dependable back line players.
"They (Thompson and Mora) were solid," South Tahoe coach Chris DeLeon said. "It was a fun game. We were passing the ball well. We try to carry it (emotion) throughout the game. That's the biggest thing."
South Tahoe took a 1-0 lead five minutes into the game when Carson goalie Bud Kop elected to come out and defend a shot instead of letting his defender have the opportunity. Kop made a great save on the first attempt, but Milton Montoya lofted the rebound in the upper left-hand corner of the goal.
"He just read it that there was open space and placed it," DeLeon said.
Fifteen minutes later, South Tahoe made it 2-0 when Jamie Estrada, off a pass from Montoya, beat Kop.
Carson's Adam Updegrove had a soft shot on goal and Enrique Mendoza had a hard shot blocked by a Viking defender inside the 18-yard area.
The Vikings made it 3-0 when Ernesto Mosqueda, despite heavy pressure from Kevin Brush still got a good enough shot off to get it past Kop in the 45th minute. In the 63rd minute, the Vikings scored their final goal when Alex Hand crossed a beautiful ball to Mosqueda, who headed it in.
VIKINGS WIN JV GAME
South Tahoe scored two goals in each half en route to a 4-0 win over Carson, handing the Senators their first loss of the season.
Carson is 9-1 overall and 4-1 in league.
Coach Joe Briggs praised the defensive play of Alex Kaskie, Andrew Hill, John Medina and Nick Marsh.