By BRAD KEITH
STEPHENVILLE (January 16, 2015) — Stephenville boys soccer coach Joe Carter won’t let a 4-0 loss to two time defending 4A (now 5A) state champion Waco University take any of the shine of what the Yellow Jackets have achieved in the opening week of their season.
“They’re really good, really skilled,” said Carter after University defeated the improving Yellow Jackets in the championship of the Knights of Columbus Challenge of Champions Saturday afternoon at Stephenville Soccer Complex. “They’re the best team we’ll play, probably the best we’ll play no matter how far we go (in the playoffs).”
Stephenville certainly looked like a playoff team for the bulk of the Challenge of Champions, including a bold statement with Saturday morning’s 1-0 victory over tough Marble Falls in a physical battle. The only goal came from
After going 2-0 on Friday, the Marble Falls win punched Stephenville’s ticket to the championship matchup against University, and the intensity level was noticeably different in the pool finale – a 1-1 tie with University’s junior varsity team. Felipe Espinoza gave the Jackets a 1-0 lead midway through the first half on a free kick he bombed into the net from 40 yards out.
Stephenville was 3-1-1 in the five-game fund-raising event, and is 4-1-1 on the young season. The Jackets allowed just three goals in five games before facing University’s varsity.
Aaron Veloz, a sophomore forward who had four goals in a single game on Friday, was Stephenville’s varsity representative on the all-tournament team, voted on by opposing head coaches. Mauricio Barron was named all-tournament from Stephenville’s JV, which went 0-4 against varsity competition.
There is little rest ahead for Stephenville. Both clubs travel to Burkburnett for games at 5 and 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, then the varsity Jackets compete in Saginaw’s tournament Thursday through Saturday.