Unless you’re a coach, student-athlete or parent/guardian of a student-athlete whose high school soccer season takes place in spring, this year’s soccer season came to an end Saturday night, Feb. 23.
And what a conclusion it was. I was assigned to the North Coast Section 2A boys final between Piedmont and Campolindo at Acalanes High School. Not to belabor a point, as I’ve written about this game in a previous entry, but both teams did themselves proud. OK, so the score was 6-1 for Campolindo, but there were a lot of elements in this game to appreciate.
I wish there could have been two of me that same night, as colleague Matt Smith looked as if he caught a very good game in witnessing Pittsburg beat Amador Valley for the boys 3A title. Can only wonder, though, how Richmond High would have held up against either of those teams. Richmond, as described in an earlier post, was the team of skill in its Feb. 16 quarterfinal at home against Deer Valley, which relied largely on force. Deer Valley might have prevailed on a late penalty kick in that game, but the biggest loser was the sport of soccer itself.
In the long run, though, soccer itself was no loser come Feb. 23. Colleague Bill Kruissink, from all reports, saw a real barnburner when covering the 3A girls championship game between San Ramon Valley and Foothill at Dublin High. SRV won this game in a shootout. OK, so shootouts never are perfect; they’re a tough way to lose and maybe not the most satisfying way to win. Still, it sounded like a great game for both teams, who can only be proud of the performances they gave.
Colleague Phil Jensen covered the 2A girls title match between Piedmont and Miramonte that preceded the boys match at Acalanes High. Having arrived at Acalanes well in advance of the boys game, I was able to catch the last few minutes of the girls match. The scoreboard read, “Home 1, Visitors 0,” when I arrived, but until I asked Phil specifically, I could not tell which team was ahead as both the Highlanders and victorious Matadors kept attacking until the final whistle.
Yes, the winter soccer season is finished. And for the sport of soccer itself, it ended on a high note.