West Coast Wildfire U15G – The West Coast Wildfire tackled two local powerhouses this weekend two bring home victories in league play. The Wildfire easily defeated San Leandro’s Northstars 2-0 and outplayed Danville’s Mustang Blaze for a 1-0 win. Picture is West Coast Sierra Martin clearing a ball out of the backfield.
The West Coast Wildfire Take Out Two – The West Wildfire U15G faced two tough matches this weekend to bring home victories in both Norcal Premier League (NPL) and California Regional League (CRL) play.
Friday night under the lights, the Wildfire battled the San Leandro Northstars in a CRL league game. From the whistle, Wildfire gained possession of the ball and proceeded to go on an offensive attack. West Coast Forward, Paola Samaniego, scored first on a breakaway midway through the first half. At the half, West Coast had a 1-0 lead.
In the second half, West Coast came out with a well organized defense and dominated much of the play throughout the full size field at Robertson Park field in Livermore CA. Wildfire’s possession led to another goal by Samaniego to give West Coast a 2-0 shutout victory over the Northstars. “ My teammates were winning balls in the midfield and I was finding good space to receive passes. I was able to get free and finish my chances, it feels great to help my team with two goals” said Paola Samaniego.
Early Saturday morning, the Wildfire played their second game of the weekend against Mustang Blaze in Danville. With a taste of victory left over from the night before, Wildfire came out strong with precision passes to control the ball and maneuver into scoring position. Midfielders and the defensive line put up a solid wall that prevented Mustang from penetrating the backfield. At the half, the score remained 0-0.
In the first five minutes of the second half, Wildfire capitalized on a Mustang handball foul just outside the 18 yard box. Wildfire’s Meghan Giamona shot a free kick that ricocheted off a Mustang player and into the waiting feet of West Coast defender Kylie Martinez. Martinez nailed a perfect shot into the top left corner of the goal just out of reach of the goalie’s reach. Wildfire moved ahead 1-0.
The match continued with Wildfire executing their strategy to play through the Mustang defensive line. Wildfire created several additional scoring opportunities but could not find the goal. With a minute left to go in the match, Mustang came on strong with a desperate offensive attack. A shot was fired at West Coast goalie, Nicole Pastrikas, who deflected the ball into a sea of Mustang and Wildfire players playing pinball. As the ball rolled in front of the goal, West Coast Defender, Chloe Brickwedel scrambled to get a toe on the ball and prevent a Mustang opportunity. The match ended on the next play with Wildfire winning 1-0. “After playing a late night game on Friday Night, Wildfire players performed exceptionally well in this early 8am game!” says Coach Troy Dayak of his teams effort.
The West Coast Wildfire U15 girls play in two northern California premier leagues, CRL and NPL. Midway through the fall season, and with several wins over top teams, the girls are proving to be a force to reckon with.