By Steven Ramirez/Riverside Coras FC
It was a perfect day for local soccer in Riverside, CA. The clouds finally departed from the Inland Empire, the temperature settled at perfect, and the crowd was ready to support the Riverside Coras. For the Coras it would be its second match of the season, while High Desert Elite FC was kicking off its first-ever NPSL match in history. Three points were on the line and both teams were hungry to earn their first results of the season.
The Riverside Coras Football Club would make a few changes to the lineup from the previous week. Most notably, Danny Castro would move into the central attacking midfield position and Hugo Gutierrez would slot into the center defensive midfield role. The midfield was key in maintaining possession and dictating the tempo of the match.
Within the first ten minutes the Coras would earn three close chances, but couldn’t find the back of the net. Then in the 21st minute, center back Jose Perez would come up big off a Coras corner, sent in by Danny Castro. Perez read the corner perfectly and got over all of the High Desert defense.
The Coras would not stop attacking after that and striker Adrian Moreno would blast a shot from about 20 yards and score the second Riverside goal. The Coras would grab one more before the end of the first half from striker David Trevino.
It was all Riverside Coras FC in the first half. The majority of the ball was played in the High Desert half. The Coras midfield continued to pass the ball from left to right and waited for spaces to open in the High Desert backline.
The second half started out a bit slower, but it took no time at all for both squads to get back into the match. High Desert opened up more in the second half, as they continued to search for the clubs first-ever NPSL goal.
The Coras attack would stay relentless. Israel Vasquez would sub in for the Coras and bring a whole new dynamic to the attack. As High Desert expanded, more gaps opened in its backline. Striker Adrian Moreno would blaze through the space and into the box where he was taken down, earning the penalty. Moreno would be rewarded for his efforts and be given the opportunity to score the penalty he earned. He would step up and bury his second goal of the night and the Coras fourth, making him the Man of the Match.
Riverside would go on to battle to the final minutes, trying to hold onto the clean sheet. In the final minutes the High Desert attack would capitalize off a poor pass from the Coras backline to the goalie. As both clubs scrambled to get the ball, High Desert Elite would find the back of the net, scoring the first-ever goal in the club’s NPSL history.
The match would end 4-1 in favor of the hometown Coras. Head coach Shane Shelton was happy with the result and effort.
“Any time you get three points you get excited,” Shelton said. “The boys will now buy into our success, because this is how we got success. There was a constant high effort and the team is buying into the game plan.”
Next week the Riverside Coras FC travels to ASC San Diego to face the 2018 NPSL Southwest Conference champions. It will be a tough match, but the club is looking forward to the challenge ahead of them. It is another three points they feel they can collect.
Photo Credit: Catherine Upson//Riverside Coras FC