The Burroughs soccer team fell to the Palmdale Falcons 1-0 Thursday at Sherman E. Burroughs Stadium, but not before some late-game dramatics that, at least, served as the theme for the game.
Alex Villa connected on a pass from Keanu Ostachuk and nearly tied the match at 1, but the ball grazed the top corner of the net and went out of play.
“It just didn’t curl,” said Villa. who ended the match with three shots. “I’m gonna be thinking about that one.”
Nevertheless, Villa’s shot on goal was a commonality for the Burros, who started the game with heavy offense and earned multiple opportunities to light the scoreboard.
In fact, Burroughs head coach Kris Dickson did not hesitate to call this one the best game the Burros have played this season. The team played as a unit, kept passes smooth, and was opportunistic down the stretch.
“This was the best game we played in the two seasons that I have coached here,” Dickson said. “From the first whistle to the last. The tenacity and cohesiveness were completely fantastic to watch.”
In the 13th minute, Cameron O’Leary handled a pass from defender Luis Ramirez and nearly got in the net, but the ball rolled just past the post.
O’Leary had another shot in the 19th minute, leaping in the air to make contact with an aerial ball, but Palmdale’s keeper just got his fingertips on the ball, pushing it to the side of the goal and out of play.
In the 43rd minute, Katin Ostachuk tried a shot inside the box, but it rolled inside the keeper’s hands.
Palmdale scored off a corner kick that met with the back post in the 48th minute. The Burros had two more opportunities in the frame on set pieces alone: a free kick went right to the keeper, and a corner kick was corralled by the keeper before the Burros had a second-chance opportunity.
“Kudos to their keeper,” Dickson said. “He kept them (the Falcons) in this. He made fantastic saves. ... We’ve been working a lot more on set pieces over the past week. We’re spending a lot of time on it, even with our game schedule, and have been trying to squeak that in with our pregame stuff. A lot was set pieces that we were playing four days in a row, including a practice in there.”
Dickson named Villa his man of the match, not just because of the close shot to end the match, but also because of his game management; “the way he kept the midfield organized.”
The Burros will have a break before participating in the annual Garces Holiday Tournament next weekend.