GARDEN VALLEY — Leading 2-1 at halftime of its CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division VI playoff opener, the Golden Sierra High girls soccer team wanted additional momentum going into the final 40 minutes against Gustine.
Kaleigh Brothers provided that momentum in the first minute of the second half. The Grizzly forward fired a shot into the Redskins’ net that picked up Golden Sierra, which went to post a 4-1 victory over Gustine on Thursday afternoon at the Grizzlies’ field.
Golden Sierra head coach David Gleason said the playoff win was only the second one in the Golden Sierra girls soccer program’s history; the 2008 Golden Sierra squad beat Vacaville Christian in overtime, 4-3.
Brothers’ shot in the second half, with an assist from midfielder Robin Moore, came from midfield that increased the Grizzlies’ lead to 3-1. In the 48th minute, Grizzly forward Kourtney Brothers fired an outside shot into the Redskins’ net to account for Golden Sierra’s fourth and final goal.
“They played their best games of the year,” said Gleason of the Brothers, who are twins. “The outside shot by Kourtney was a beautiful shot. Kaleigh used her speed to a great advantage to put the ball into the net.”
The Grizzlies (11-6-2) substituted freely throughout the first and second halves, which Gleason felt would wear down the Redskins.
“I tried to keep the girls fresh because they are a fast team,” said Gleason of his and Gustine’s squad. “I knew that if we could wear them down a little bit in the second half, we would have an advantage if we could play at the speed we are capable of.”
In the first half, Grizzly forward Taylor Gleason scored the first goal in the 10th minute of the game. Gustine responded with its only goal on a free kick to tie the game at 1-all. But Kaleigh scored the Grizzlies’ second goal for a 2-1 lead.
Golden Sierra goalies Laura Russel and Jenna Matyac combined for 10 saves; Russel had eight and Matyac two.
Now Golden Sierra, the No. 4 seed in D-VI, plays at No. 1 seed Amador on Wednesday. The winner will play the Millennium-Capital Christian winner for the section title on Saturday, May 18.
Contact Mike Bush at 530-344-5079 or [email protected] Follow @MBushMtDemo on Twitter.