By ASC San Diego
ASC San Diego got its 2020 season off to a fantastic start by securing three points in conference play with a 2-1 win against AS Los Angeles. The first match of the season was an exciting one for the home crowd at Mission Bay Stadium as ASC secured the victory under the lights.
The first half was action-packed. Both sides worked diligently to get the first points on the board. There were plenty of hard drives to the net by both teams, but ASC had more control of the pitch as well as the pace of the match. It was also evident that there was a certain level of anxiety by the home and away teams. Amid a pack of penalties from both sides, ASC saw two of its players receive yellow cards within the first 15 minutes of the match. But they were able to settle themselves and continue dominating the half.
This adjustment and strong play allowed them to be the first between the pipes. The 25th minute saw ASC midfielder Brandon Cortez take the ball into the middle of the pitch and give a pass to fellow midfielder Wilton Quintero. Then Quintero made a lovely cross to the waiting boot of Angel Sanchez, who was able to slot the ball past ASLA’s keeper right to the back of the net, giving San Diego the lead.
ASC midfielder Andrew Miranda also had several strong drives up the right side along with a few unsuccessful attempts to get on the scoresheet. But he was eventually able to get in a position to loft a perfect ball to the waiting head of teammate Garmina Paygar-Flangiah, who deftly knocked it past ASLA keeper Andreas Armando Figueroa Flores to go up 2-0 over AS Los Angeles.
The away side had several solid attempts to light up their team’s side of the scoreboard in the first half but ASC’s strong defense prevailed and they were unable to get on target, with most of their shots going wide of the net. ASC netminder Matthew Escareno only had to get his hands dirty a few times in the first half and was able to keep the ball from seeing the inside of his net before the whistle blew at the end of the half.
When the teams returned from the break there was an obvious renewed energy and the hope of taking home the win in this first match of the season. The play of the second half mirrored that of the previous one. Both teams were doing all they could to get within scoring range, though ASC retained most of the control as they did in the first half. They were well on their way to a clean sheet but unfortunately ASLA was able to find their way into ASC’s net off of a free kick in the 82nd minute. ASC San Diego was able to hold off their opponents for the remainder of the match, including more than four minutes of stoppage time, and get their first win on the books for the 2020 season.
Photo Credit: Diane Scavuzzo, Michelle Derald & Keith Derald