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His offense, Righetti boys soccer coach Gio Garcia figured, was bound to break loose sometime.

Tuesday night, Garcia said, was that night.

Righetti broke past St. Joseph's back defensive line a lot, Myles Baro scored twice and the sixth-seeded Warriors beat the 11th-seeded Knights 4-1 in a first-round CIF Central Section Division II playoff game on a chilly evening at Righetti's Warrior Stadium.

"Best we've played with the ball all year," Garcia said afterward.

"It had to come sometime, and it finally came. We have the offense that can do it, and it was good to see it all come together."

The game was the inaugural Central Section playoff one for both teams after both programs moved from the Southern Section earlier this year. The Warriors (9-11-2) will play at No. 3 Sanger in the quarterfinals.

The game is tentatively set for Friday at a time to be determined. The Righetti-St. Joseph game was originally set for Wednesday night, but it was moved to Tuesday evening because rain was forecast for the area for Wednesday.

St. Joseph finished 9-12-2.

"This was an improved St. Joseph team," said Baro. "They've improved from last year, and they improved from the time we played them in the pre-season (1-1 tie in a Dec. 6 non-league game).

"We expected a battle tonight, and that's what we got."

The teams were PAC 8 League rivals when they played in the Southern Section. This year, the Knights went 6-6 in the Ocean League and the Warriors went 3-7 in the Mountain League.

Under Central Section guidelines, any team that does not win a league championship can petition to get into the playoffs.

Baro helped make sure Righetti's playoff stay would last more than one game.

He scored the lone first-half goal then helped the Righetti attack re-gain momentum after St. Joseph controlled the ball most of the first few minutes after intermission and threatened to tie the score.

A good right-to-left St. Joseph free kick from about 40 yards out went just wide left.

It was almost all Righetti in terms of ball control after that. Rigoberto Lopez broke free in the Knights' penalty box in the 12th minute after the break, took a pass and scored.

The Knights looked out of it after Righetti pressure helped result in an own goal against St. Joseph in the 16th minute after intermission.

The Warriors kept coming, and only St. Joseph goalkeeper Gabe Penna's work kept the game from becoming a blowout. Penna made three diving saves. after the own goal 

Suddenly, the St. Joseph attack showed some life. Righetti goalkeeper Yeshua Perez had to make a diving save then shortly thereafter, the Knights' Christian Angulo DID score on a header with about 11 minutes left.

The Knights couldn't come close to scoring again and Baro, after working himself free in the St. Joseph penalty box with about eight minutes to play, knocked in the last goal.

Righetti starting goalkeeper Jashawn Coulibaly helped the Warriors keep the Knights scoreless in the first half. 

The Warriors probably figured they were due some good fortune after five of their seven Mountain League losses, including three in overtime, came by a single goal.

"Going into the league season, we figured every game was going to be a battle," said Baro.

As for the Knights, they improved significantly from their 6-16 2017-18.

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Sports Reporter