It's early, but this 1-1 draw in overtime helped Santa Ynez's boys soccer team more than it did Santa Maria.
Both teams gained a point in the Los Padres League standings (if there had been a loser in overtime the loser would have gotten a point for getting the game into overtime), but Santa Ynez stayed three points ahead of the Saints in the LPL standings after this tie at Santa Maria's Ralph Baldiviez Stadium Thursday night.
Santa Ynez is 6-3-3, 3-0-1. Santa Maria is 7-5-2, 2-1-1. The Pirates have 10 points in the league standings. The Saints have seven.
The Santa Ynez-Santa Maria game was scoreless after regulation. After a scramble near the Santa Ynez goal, Santa Maria's Clemente Tapia booted the ball into the net in the 2nd minute of the first overtime period.
There was a foul two yards outside of the Santa Maria penalty box in the seventh minute of the period, and Nico Rocha tied it for Santa Ynez when he knocked the ball into the right side of the net on the subsequent free kick.
No one scored in the second 10-minute overtime period, but Santa Ynez came close. Santa Maria goalkeeper Manuel Hernandez smothered the ball on his knees near the Saints' goal as time was running out.
The Saints controlled the ball most of regulation but they would often miss on that last connecting pass or the Pirates' defense, led by Liam Pollenz and Vinny Vacca, would effectively mass in the middle and cut off a threat.
"We keep working at it," said Santa Maria coach Eduardo Cuna.
"If you keep creating, that's good. We just have to eventually get that last connecting pass. We want to get that down by the time the CIF (Southern Section) Playoffs come around. That's what we're working on."
It will be awhile before the playoffs roll around. Santa Maria's last regular season game is scheduled for Feb. 2. Santa Ynez's is scheduled for Feb. 8.
Santa Maria made it to the Southern California Regional championship game last year. The Saints lost 10 players from that team to graduation.
Though Santa Maria controlled the ball most of the time in regulation, the Santa Ynez attack, led by Pollenz and Charles Harris, picked up in overtime. The Pirates just couldn't score again after the Rocha goal.
"These guys are in shape. They work at being in shape," said Santa Ynez coach Rick Joyner.
"On the field, in the weight room, they work on being in condition and it showed on the field tonight."
Late in the first half of regulation, Santa Ynez goalkeeper A.J. Reynoso was trapped out of the box, but the Saints' try hit the top post and bounced straight down.
Santa Maria's Erick Romero scored a would be-goal in the second half of regulation on a rebound shot off a free kick, but an offside call on the Saints nullified that.
There were the two Santa Maria near misses. Hernandez came out of the goal box early in the first half and slid to stop a Santa Ynez threat. Other than that, neither team came close to scoring before overtime, though Santa Maria had more shots on goal.
Diego Villagran led a Santa Maria defense that easily handled most Santa Ynez forays that got past midfield in regulation.
Reynoso was the busier of the two goalies. He charged out of the goal box several times to pick off attempted Santa Maria crossing passes.
Santa Ynez will host Lompoc at 5:30 p.m. next Tuesday night. Santa Maria will be at home against LPL rival Cabrillo at the same time.
Santa Ynez 68, Santa Maria 44
The Pirates squared their Los Padres League record at 2-2 with a win over the Saints at Santa Ynez. Santa Maria dropped to 0-4 in LPL play.
Grace Padilla led the Pirates with 16 points. Malia Loos put in 11, and grabbed six rebounds. Santa Ynez has won two straight after an 0-2 LPL start.
Santa Ynez coach Mike Alexander likes his team to put up a lot of shots, and the Pirates did so Friday night. "We shot the ball 80 times," Alexander said.
Lompoc 56, Morro Bay 35
The Braves evened their Los Padres League record at 2-2 with a win at Morro Bay (0-4 LPL).
Danielle Morgan led Lompoc with 12 points, 10 rebounds and four blocked shots.
Mya Mendoza scored 10 points for the Braves. Ketara Mangino added eight points and 12 rebounds. Bella Robles had eight points and five rebounds.
Cabrillo 52, Orcutt Academy 19
Erin Jenkins scored 15 points, and Alyssa Stewart and Valerie Monzon both had nine as the Conquistadores ran their Los Padres League record to 4-0 with a win over the Spartans at Lakeview Junior High School.
Orcutt dropped to 1-3 in the LPL.
Jenkins snared six rebounds and dished out four assists to go with her 15 points. Denisse Martinez had three assists for the Conquistadores.
Girls water polo (Wednesday)
Morro Bay 15, Santa Maria 1
Vanessa Garcia-Martinez scored for the Saints, who lost to the Pirates in a Los Padres League game at Santa Maria's Karl Bell Aquatic Center.