Bulldogs soccer earns split for the weekend | CraigDailyPress.com

Bulldogs soccer earns split for the weekend

Joshua Gordon

Carlos Maldonado, a Moffat County High School senior, fights for a corner kick earlier in the season at Loudy-Simpson Park. The MCHS boys varsity soccer team went 1-1 over the weekend, falling 4-3 on Friday at Grand Junction Central High School and winning 3-1 Saturday at Palisade High School.

After a 1-1 weekend for the Moffat County High School boys varsity soccer team, head coach Rusty Cox said he realized what his team needs to work on.

"The guys would start out slow, very slow, and then would pick it up," the coach said Monday. "We have to be able to play more consistent. We are playing good, but they keep going, from slow to aggressive to slow again, and it is not good."

The Bulldogs played Friday at Grand Junction Central High School, the second meeting between the two teams.

Like the first meeting Sept. 2, Central edged MCHS by a goal, 4-3.

On Saturday, the Bulldogs continued Western Slope League play at Palisade High School and earned their second league victory, 3-1.

Against the Warriors (6-2), MCHS was without senior defender Lupe Rodriguez, who was serving a one-game suspension for drawing a red card, and only saw limited play from junior defender Bryant Cox, who was still feeling affects of an injury.

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"We had to move some guys around to make up for the players we were down, but they would clump together and we need to spread the field more," Rusty said. "It is hard when you are down a few starters, but we have to be more consistent no matter what, and work as hard as we can."

Junior Alex Perez scored two goals against the Warriors and senior Jonathan Pando added another.

In the teams' first match-up, Central won 2-1.

Rusty said the second game was similar to the first.

"There were more points scored, but it was still a one-point game," he said. "Our passes have been off lately and they were in that game as well. One game we come out fired up and the next we are flat, so we just need to work on the little things."

The game Saturday, however, was a different story for the Bulldogs (3-3-2 overall, 2-1-1 WSL).

MCHS was again without a few players, including junior Alan Flores who received a red card against Central, but Rusty said younger players stepped up and played a big role in the win.

"We had good shots, a lot of good sends and we are getting to where we need to be," he said. "The only goal we allowed was off a penalty kick in the second half, so our defense played a really solid game."

Perez and Pando again put points up for the Bulldogs, with Perez scoring two and Pando putting in one.

Rusty said his team is continuing to improve on getting the jump when balls are sent into opponent territory.

Against Palisade (1-6 overall, 0-4 WSL), he said the team was just a little off.

"Everyone we play knows we are fast, so they line up with us and just as the ball is sent, they jump back one step so we are offsides," Rusty said. "If we can get that step on them, we are going to take advantage of it and we are getting a little closer every time."

The Bulldogs play Eagle Valley High School at 4 p.m. Thursday at Loudy-Simpson Park.

MCHS won the first game, 4-3 in overtime, on Sept. 17 at Eagle Valley.

Rusty said Eagle Valley is always a tough challenge, especially the second time.

"Last year, we beat Eagle Valley (12-4) in the first game and then lost the second game," he said. "We have been down people and they have been down people, so if both teams are full strength it should be a great game."

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Box scores

Box score from the Moffat County High School boys varsity soccer team’s game Friday at Grand Junction Central High School:

• Moffat County — 3 — 0 — 3

• Central — 2 — 2 — 4

Box score from the Moffat County High School boys varsity soccer team’s game Saturday at Palisade High School:

• Moffat County — 2 — 1 — 3

• Palisade — 0 — 1 — 1

Leading scorers

MCHS leading scorers:

• Alex Perez — 4

• Jonathan Pando — 2

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