May 17, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

PHOTOS: Late goal lifts Sunny Hills to win in opening round of So Cal Regionals

Sunny Hills players get together for a picture after Tuesday’s win. (Photos courtesy Jim McCormack, For OC Sports Zone).

In a match where the first six goals were spectacular, it was a subtle touch that decided Tuesday’s So Cal Regional Division III soccer playoff between Sunny Hills and Panorama High.

The game-winner came in the 72nd minute when Sam Takaki gently redirected a shot by Tyler Ip into the net to give the Lancers a 4-3 victory over the Pythons.

“I really didn’t do much,” Takaki said. “Tyler had the shot and I just let it bounce off my foot.”

It may not have been much, but it was enough to advance the CIF Division III champion Lancers to a second-round match at Graces Memorial (19-1-1) of Bakersfield.

To see the slide show, click on the first picture:

Sunny Hills scored first in the 7th minute and after the match a reporter for the student newspaper asked Lancer Coach Mike Schade his reaction to the goal.

“I told them I hope we win 1-0,” Schade said.

That dream didn’t last long. After the early Lancer goal, the first of three by junior Matthias Brown, who was celebrating his 17th birthday, Panorama countered 10 minutes later on a rebound by Kevin Renderos to tie the score.

The Lancers’ regained the lead in the 35th minute on Brown’s second goal, but that was neutralized by sophomore Cristopher Romero three minutes later. Brown countered again with his third goal less than a minute before halftime.

Romero squared things again three minutes into the second half and the teams battle furiously until Takaki’s goal with eight minutes remaining.

The Match was Sunny Hills’ 26th match of the season (19-3-4) and it was only the second time that the Lancers had scored more than two goals.

—Courtesy Jim McCormack,. For OC Sports Zone