Alexander, defense blank sixth straight opponent
By BRAD KEITH
WEATHERFORD (March 24, 2016) — Shorthanded and all, Stephenville (16-0-2) made the necessary defensive stands for a sixth straight shutout and Aaron Veloz scored twice to ensure the Yellow Jackets would remain unbeaten and move on in the UIL boys soccer playoffs.
Stephenville won the Region I-4A bi-district match, 2-0, over Decatur at Kangaroo Stadium, and advances to face Borger in the area round at 3 p.m. next Friday, April 1, at Memorial Stadium in Wichita falls.
Veloz scored in the ninth minute, colliding with the keeper and chipping it over him, and in the 77th minute on a PK after Aaron Burrows was fouled on the attack. The foul and PK came moments after a Veloz strike sent the ball humming just over the top of the net, one even the junior forward himself said was actually his best shot of the night.
Veloz discusses the game here:
The biggest play of the match, however, came on the defensive end in the opening moments. When Noble Alexander came out of goal under duress, Decatur was able to get a shot past him. But there to save the day was sweeper Isaac Lingle, hustling back in front of goal and heading the shot away.
Alexander talks about the shutout here:
That turned into a two-goal swing as the fast early pace continued and Veloz got loose on the other end for his first goal.
Decatur had only one true scoring chance the rest of the night, forcing Alexander to come out again. He just beat a sprinting Decatur forward to the ball, covering it as the player hurdled over the top of him late in the second half.
Stephenville was without Pedro Manrriquez and Tino Rocha, two of its stars. Each received red cards following a bench clearing brawl during a shutout of rival Brownwood to conclude the regular season last week. Borger will have to face the full slate of Jacket talent, as both players will be in the lineup next week.
Borger was trying to get Stephenville to travel to Lubbock for the area round, but the Yellow Jackets won the post game coin toss. It sets up a Stephenville doubleheader in Wichita Falls, as the Honeybees, who won earlier Thursday in Weatherford, will face Pampa at 1 p.m.
TheFlashToday.com photos by JESSIE HORTON