Ramona High School’s boys soccer team traveled to Oceanside Feb. 3 and came home with a 2-1 win against the Pirates.
The win reverses Ramona’s 2-1 loss against Oceanside Jan. 8 in the first round of Valley League play while giving Ramona a win against a team that reached the CIF finals last year.
“We felt like we played really well with them,” said Ramona Coach Michael Jordan.
The first game against Oceanside was played without Ramona seniors Johnny Sorenson and Matt Legacy, after both were injured in the Jan. 6 game against Mount Carmel. Sorenson’s sprained ankle forced Jordan to use Trevor Adelman as the sweeper, with Walker Poortinga and Jesse Cappadocia as outside defenders during Sorenson’s absence.
Legacy returned before Sorenson. In Ramona’s Jan. 29 home match against Mount Carmel, he scored the game’s only first-half goal before the Sundevils scored five times in the second half for a 5-1 victory. That game had followed a 3-1 loss Jan. 27 to San Marcos that put Ramona into last place in Valley League standings.
Jordan isn’t surprised that Sorenson’s return Feb. 3 coincided with the end of Ramona’s three-game losing streak.
“Johnny Sorenson being back at sweeper was huge for us,” said Jordan. “It makes all the players around him play better.”
While Poortinga and Cappadocia remained as the outside defenders, Adelman returned to the stopper position upon Sorenson’s return, allowing Adelman not only to play his natural position but also to interact with midfielders.
Ramona’s offense took advantage of that defensive stability, and Chris Huber had both an assist and a goal in Ramona’s win over Oceanside.
“He had a fantastic night,” Jordan said of Huber.
Midway in the first half, Eric Brown dribbled the ball down the sidelines before passing to Huber. Although Huber’s shot went off the goalkeeper’s hands, John Randol headed the ball into the net to give Huber an assist and give the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead which stood through halftime.
Jordan’s halftime speech to his players warned that the game wouldn’t end with a 1-0 score and the Bulldogs needed to keep pushing. Oceanside scored early in the second half to tie the game, and the players took Jordan’s words to heart.
“The boys kept their heads in the game,” Jordan said. “We kept playing and they had their chances to go ahead and we had ours.”
Adelman’s territory as stopper rather than sweeper allowed him to make a pass to Huber as the game drew to a close. Huber beat the Pirate sweeper and scored with a minute left in the contest.
The win gave Ramona a 2-6 record in Valley League competition and a 5-11-1 overall season mark. It also gave the Bulldogs a win going into what would become a week’s break.
Rain postponed the game at Orange Glen scheduled for Feb 5. The game is likely to be played tomorrow, while a bye in the Bulldogs’ schedule Feb. 10 leaves Ramona idle until today’s scheduled game at Valley Center.
The win also gave Ramona more victories than the 2007-08 boys team, which finished 4-11-1 overall and 2-9-1 in Valley League competition.