Ignited by a second-half scoring charge that saw the soccer ball hit the back of the net three times, Santa Ynez upended Lompoc 4-1 at Huyck Stadium on Thursday, securing the outright Los Padres League girls soccer title in the winner-take-all battle.
Future Sonoma State soccer player Ashley von Tillow started the Pirates’ final half scoring pace with her goal near the 28th minute mark. Then, Kyra Glaus got some hang time with her goal, as she nailed an in-swinger kick from the left handed corner that saw the ball fly through the air for three seconds before falling inside the goalie box.
Her teammates immediately leaped into her arms after booting the highlight reel goal and earned praise from her head coach Rob Cantrell.
“It’s like football and kicking a field goal. You’ve got your right footed kicker and you got a soccer style kick coming. I just told her to get behind the ball and move to the left a little bit by going for the far post, and she just adjusted to it great. It was nice to see her do it,” Cantrell said.
Glaus smiled and laughed about her aerial score.
“My coach told me to hit the far post…and that was where it went,” Glaus said.
Lompoc (10-6-3, 10-3-1 in the LPL) not only honored its lone senior Mayah Pico before the game, but also had a special guest in tow: Vandenberg Middle School student Sydney Dimock, who is currently battling cancer.
The eighth grader diagnosed with a brain tumor, which was surgically removed on Jan. 18. Braves head coach Jason Cochrane named her the honorary captain for Lompoc and Brave players presented her with an autographed T-shirt before the LPL title bout.
“I was told about it (being a honorary captain) yesterday in the doctor’s office. I was excited,” Dimock said.
Her parents and younger sister were also present to witness Dimock get honored. Her mother Tricia Lemus said Dimock was diagnosed with the brain tumor on Jan. 16 and immediately went to the UCLA Medical Center to undergo surgery.
“She was admitted right away. She had surgery the next morning,” Lemus said, who described the tumor as a stage three one. “They were able to remove it, but they still have to finalize it with the radiation, so they’re thinking six more weeks of radiation. We’ve had amazing support from the community and everyone.”
Lompoc started accelerating to the goal early on, as freshman Ayziah Simmons and sophomore Monica Escalante tried leading a potential scoring charge. However, the attempted shots would either sail wide or fall into the hands of Pirates goal keeper Breanna Rodrigues. Simmons also had a header attempt that was caught by the junior goalkeeper.
Hayley Sadecki broke the scoreless tie by scoring first near the 20 minute mark of the first half, helping give Santa Ynez (14-6-2, 11-3 LPL) the 1-0 halftime lead.
After the half, von Tillow, Glaus and Julia Pritchard tacked on the final goals for the outright league champion Pirates, who shared the LPL title with Nipomo last season.
“I’m just really proud of our team. This season has been a little bit of a struggle but I’m glad we made it through and I’m proud to be a part of such a wonderful group of girls,” Glaus said.
Added von Tillow: “It’s pretty much the same thing. We went through our ups and downs together, but we worked it out and became league champs. This game came down to who wanted it more and we came alive.”
Simmons scored the first and last goal for LHS as she launched the ball from the left side of the field.
Braves head coach Jason Cochrane said he knew that his young team would be in for a challenge against a traditional soccer power in the 805.
“You go into a championship match knowing that at some point, someone is going to come out on top and someone won’t. This team (Santa Ynez) has a pedigree for being in this position, where as for us, this is something that we still have to keep working toward,” Cochrane said. “To be in this position tonight took a lot of hard work, and we’ll utilize what we’ve learned to move forward and get better for the future.”
After the game, Pirates forward Morgan Watts pulled out her cell phone and recorded a video, as her teammates were yelling “league champs!” in the background.