Uploaded: Friday, January 25, 2013, 9:34 PM
Palo Alto girls' soccer maintains hold on first place
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|The Palo Alto girls' soccer team had plenty to celebrate on Friday as the Vikings remained in first place in the SCVAL El Camino and sophomore Katie Foug marked her 16th birthday with a goal in a 4-0 victory over visiting Lynbrook.
The triumph allowed Paly to maintain its solid grip on first place as the Vikings improved to 7-0-1 in league (8-4-2 overall).
At 10 minutes in and after three previous shots at the Lynbrook goal, Paly's Olivia Musil took a pass from Foug at about 30 yards out and one-touched a line-drive shot found the net. While the Palo Alto defense remained airtight, the offense fired off 14 more shots at Lynbrook's cage in the first half but had to settle for 1-0 lead at halftime.
Three minutes into the second half, Jacey Pederson dribbled through multiple defenders to Lynbrook's corner, turned and fired a cross to the far post, where Megan Tall made a textbook header for a 2-0 lead.
At eight minutes in, Aoi Sugihara found Foug in front of the Lynbrook goal for the third score. With 19 minutes remaining, Paly's Nina Kelty found Isabelle Kelsey, who scored and put the game out of reach at 4-0.
In the West Bay Athletic League (Foothill Division), Sacred Heart Prep saw its chance of gaining on first-place Menlo School fall by the wayside after suffering a 1-1 deadlock with host Notre Dame-San Jose on Friday. The Gators are now 3-1-3 in league for 12 points (7-2-4 overall) and now trail Menlo by six points.
Sacred Heart Prep failed to capitalize on its big win over co-leader Menlo earlier in the week by playing to a 0-0 deadlock with host King's Academy on Friday in West Bay Athletic League action in Sunnyvale.
The Gators (6-0-1, 9-2-2) still lead the league, but only by one point after Menlo posted a 1-0 win over Priory on Friday.
"I'm always weary after a big win, yet we came out, dominated and created great opportunities," said SHP coach Armando del Rio. "We just didn't put them away, and it happens sometimes. We are only as good as our last match."
In Atherton, Menlo School scored a late goal to beat visiting Priory, 1-0. Menlo (6-1, 9-3-1) gained slightly in the league race thanks to SHP's tie.
Menlo controlled play in the first half creating several scoring chances but were unable to take the lead. Senior Ryan Karle was unfortunate not to put the Knights ahead on a few different occasions but the Priory keeper was always up to the task.
Menlo started the second half with its usual fluid passing but Priory defended well. Priory had a couple of chances to take the lead but Menlo senior captain Tim Costa made some key saves to keep the game level, recording his eighth shutout of the season in the process.
Menlo broke the deadlock in the 71st minute when sophomore Kyle Perez played Karle down the left wing. Karle fired a shot that deflected off his defender, looping over the goalie into the far side of the net. Menlo outshot Priory 16-5.
In the SCVAL El Camino Division, Palo Alto suffered a big hit to its title hopes and postseason aspirations following a 2-1 upset loss to host Lynbrook on Friday afternoon. The Vikings dropped to 4-2-1 in league (8-4-2 overall) and further behind first-place Fremont, which started the day eight points ahead of the third-place Vikings.
Paly grabbed a 1-0 lead in the first half when Chris Meredith scored off an assist from fellow senior Alex Chin. Paly had several more opportunities, but couldn't convert. Later in the half, Lynbrook was awarded a penalty kick on a hand ball at the top of the box. Paly keeper Tony Maharaj blocked the shot away, but the Paly defenders failed to clear the deflection and Lynbrook scored.
In the second half, Paly began pressing hard in the but, despite several chances, could not convert. Lynbrook scored a goal with 10 minutes remaining after a corner kick was cleared to the top of the box. A Lynbrook player made an over-the-shoulder shot that caught the Paly defense by surprise.
Paly will play a previously postponed match with visiting Cupertino on Monday at 6 p.m.
In the PAL Bay Division, Menlo-Atherton climbed back into the race with a 1-0 victory over visiting Woodside. The Bears improved to 4-2-1 in league (7-3-2 overall).
— Palo Alto Online Sports
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