NCS soccer wrap-up

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.


  • Soccermom

    Ok so it’s offical Carondalet is leaving BVAL next yr, will Clayton Valley be following them to a diff league next yr as well?

  • Soccerdad

    Why did the game of soccer lose out when Richmond were eliminated?There are many different styles in soccer, as it happens in this game the more direct approach won. To be a true lover of the game of soccer you must appreciate all styles of soccer. Anyway Richmond already got beat by Amador by the same scoreline as Deer Valley 3-0 in the winter classic final. Do your research!

  • Mike McGreehan

    Soccerdad, I can appreciate various playing styles (take a look at some of the other soccer posts I’ve written these past weeks), but does rough play constitute a style? Richmond had a guy get hurt within the first minute of the game, for cryin’ out loud. He was able to return later, but the teammate who got a concussion early in the second half wasn’t so fortunate. When rough play triumphs over skill, soccer – – or any other sport for that matter – -loses, no matter who the competing teams are.

  • bocajrs

    Mike, I agree 100% with you. Soccerdad, what Deer Valley played against Richmond was not a “style”, it was a “lack of style”. They played what Americans call “Kick-ball”, which in no way is a “style”. If you did your research, you would have realized that when Richmond got beat by Amador in the WC, they had played back to back tournaments. They were without various starters as they were out with injuries from the prior tournament. At full strength, they can beat any team. That is the problem with “American Soccer Fans”, they think that a good player is one that can hit hard, kick far and run fast. The game of Futbol is so much more than that and deserves to be repected more than that. What Richmond plays is what is “Futbol”, not Soccer, believe it or not, they are 2 differant things!!!

  • I appreciate the feedback from soccerdad and the other writers. This year we played a direct style of soccer that worked for us because of the players we had. Richmond’s indirect style of play was not as effective against us as it might have been against other teams. We are a very physical team because soccer is a very physical sport. We worked out in the gym every morning to make our aggressive play as effective as possible. We like to think of our play as more of an english style of play, rather than a latin style of play. We made it to the semi-finals of NCS with our different style so it worked well for us.

  • soccerdad

    I think the ongoing debate is great. Everyone is entitled to an opinion which is fantastic, the fact remains that Richmond lost…again. So regardless of what or how they play they were ineffective. Were they more technical, yes but not good enough to beat Deer Valley. Did DV play kick ball, no, longer and more direct, yes. In fact I was at the game and they could have been 2-0 up at half time. At ‘full strength’ Richmond couldnt beat DV let alone top seeds Amador and Pitt.Regarding ‘american soccer fans’ I think the statement is ignorant an unfounded. Each team works with the players they have. DV had size and they used it. Different teams match up in different ways.The major issue I see is Richmond clearly choking when it gets to the big games, as seen in previous years.
    Mike I can see your point regarding injuries but if you were at the match you would have seen neither challenge was given as a foul let alone a yellow card.They were clean and hard.Injuries are an unfortunate part of the game but one that must be accepted. Just because a team plays attractive flowing soccer doesnt mean they deserve victory. The statement you made regarding DV just takes away from all the hard work the team put in throughout the year to prepare. As for soccer losing, thats what they said when Italy won the world cup, however it doesnt dismiss the fact they still won it!Love it or hate it that is the beautiful game!

  • DV Soccer Dad

    Well said, soccerdad. Anyone who saw our game against Amador Valley and the Amador Pitt game would see that Amador plays a similar style to our team. When we played them, they had the size and speed to beat us at our own game. For that we have to take our hats off to them, but had Amador played Richmond, I do not think the out come would have been different than the DV Richmond game.

    One other key to the DV Richmond game was that the refs let the boys play. It made for an exciting game. We were sweating bullets during the 8 minutes of stoppage time.

    But at the end of the day, the NCS teams I saw were very deserving of the honor of their selections and we should say congrats to the players and coaches on a great year and a loud shout out to our friends at Pitt. Outstanding job. You deserved your title…Champions. Enjoy it

  • Muy buen blog. No veo la hora de que llegue el mundial de futbol en sudafrica 2010