The El Dorado boys soccer team displayed aggressive offense and solid defense to turn back visiting Union Mine 4-0 Thursday night in the team’s first Sierra Valley Conference matchup.
Both came in needing a win. The Cougars struck first after Sam McCrea carried possession through the middle but ran into a mark. Teammate Brandon Eldridge jumped on the loose ball and sent a long drive over Union Mine keeper Nick Boring for the quick 1-nil advantage.
As El Dorado’s back line of Tyler Rossi, Aaron Line, Christian Fitzgerald and Jose Santana-Castillo dug in in front of keeper Dan Snyder, El Dorado doubled its lead despite Chris Lee’s clear when McCrea one-timed a run-on shot from straightaway that eluded Boring.
The D’backs mustered several runs on goal, led by Estaban Gonzalez and Bryce Yaple, but their airborne shots missed their target.
The hosts added another before the half when Eldridge was credited with his second goal after his rocket deflected off a Union Mine defender in the box as Boring leaned toward its intended direction.
The D’back defense, led by Daniel Saich, tightened for the final 40 minutes. Though Boring switched jerseys to add offensive punch in the midfield, the Cougars met the challenge defensively.
El Dorado scored its final goal with 13 minutes left as Line sent a kick upfield Gabe Hurwitt ran with to the corner and cut to the net along the endline where he beat the keeper inside the near post.
Union Mine won some late corners but couldn’t connect in the box to get on the scoreboard.