Princeton secures season-opening win
By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on August 22, 2012 1:48 PM
PRINCETON -- Eusebio Montoya had just three official days of practice prior to his debut as the head soccer coach at Princeton High School on Tuesday night.
No one in the stands was any the wiser.
Princeton jumped in front early and cruised to a 5-2, season-opening win over Lakewood at the Fred Bartholomew Athletic Complex.
"I thought we played really well for having almost no time to train," Montoya said. "Offensively we looked pretty good. Defensively there are a few things to fix, but I expected that after the first game."
The Bulldogs got on the scoreboard in the second minute when Vicente Mendez laced a perfect corner kick into the box and Marcos Gonzales headed the ball into the net. Princeton made the score 2-0 in the 24th minute when Gonzales capitalized on a Lakewood turnover and found the mark for the second time.
Montoya's squad made the score 3-0 just before the half when Oliver Balderas found the back of the net with a shot from 20 yards out.
"It was good to see the guys get off to such a good start," Montoya said. "I didn't really know what to expect, but I was definitely pleased with what I saw."
Princeton put the game away in the 61st minute when Zeke Whitley scored off of a 30-yard run that ended in a point-blank shot. Whitley made the score 5-0 less than two minutes later when he collected a pass from Balderas and beat the Lakewood keeper.
The Leopards mounted a late rally when Sadi Sabala connected for a pair of goals in the final nine minutes, but the clock was on the Bulldogs' side.
"I think we might have gotten a little winded there toward the end," Montoya said. "But with only three team practices before the first game there was not a lot of time to get organized and do conditioning."
Goalie Will Toler finished with three saves for Princeton.
The Bulldogs owned a 10-6 advantage in shots.
Princeton (1-0-0 overall) travels to North Johnston today.
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