Blogs / Features
Les WillseyStaff Writer, AIA365.com email@example.com
D.Vista-Highand gals, D.Vista-Hamilton boys in Diablo finalDec 6, 2012
Highland's girls soccer team had to rally to earn a spot Thursday night in the Bill Vanney Tempe Diablos championship game, but got the job done with consistent pressure on the offensive end in the second half at Tempe Sports Complex.
Bre McCarter tapped in a rebound in the 58th minute to give Highland a 2-1 win over Hamilton in the tournament semifinals that was also a rematch of last year's Division I final..
Highland, with a tournament-high 20 goals, faces Desert Vista in Friday's (Dec. 8) final at 6 p.m. at Tempe Sports Complex. Desert Vista's girls advanced by blanking Corona del Sol, 5-0, in the other semifinal. Desert Vista has won all four of its matches in the tournament by shutout.
Hamilton drew first blood in the rematch tallying in the 22nd minute. McKaya Brown fed teammate Jaime Salas much like a quarterback would a receiver on a fly pattern and Salas fired home the goal from close range in full gallop. Highland battled back to tie in the 35th minute, scoring off a corner kick from Jaden DeGracie that Ashley Hatch converted.
Desert Vista blitzed Corona from the start and put that match away early with four first-half goals. Those were two goals each for Kelly Watson and Rachel Ressler. The Thunder;'s final goal came early in the second half from Hannah Gavin.
In the boys semifinals -- one an all-Chandler affair -- Hamilton used first-half goals by Luis Manta and Nolan Barth to edge Chandler, 2-1. Hamilton led 2-0 after the first half and had the lead sliced to 2-1 midway through the second half. Chandler's goal was by Fernando Iniquez. Chandler had a couple chances for the equalizer later in the half, but couldn't convert.
Hamilton's boys title game opponent Friday (Dec. 7) at 6 p.m. at Tempe Sports Complex is Desert Vista. Desert Vista topped Red Mountain, 1-0. The game's only goal came via a penalty kick by the Thunder's Danny Gavin in the first half. Desert Vista and Hamilton each have surrendered just two goals in their four tournament games.