Soccer Cats shut out Paris in opener

From Staff Reports

Jan. 30, 2008 - Some people might want to call Cruz Lozano's game-winning shot for the Sulphur Springs Wildcats a miracle, but SSHS head soccer coach Andy Holt will disagree.

"It was about the third time Cruz has done it," Holt said of Lozano's long-range kick. "If you do it three times, it's not luck, it's skill."

Lozano provided the only scoring for either team as the Wildcats shut out Paris 1-0 in the District 16-4A opener Tuesday at Gerald Prim Stadium.

Lozano's shot came about 10 minutes into the second half when he turned on the ball and sent a shot from 35 yards out.

"It caught the keeper off his line and it went right underneath the bar and into the net," Holt explained. "It was a great shot.

"We really had chances in the first half. Oscar (Marroquin) hit the post with about a minute left in the first half, and we had a couple more opportunities in the first half.

"Offensively, we were creating things. I thought Oscar and Cruz were creating opportunities, we just weren't finishing."

After Lozano's goal, the Wildcats played good enough defense to register the victory.

"It seemed like there was a lot of offensive opportunities, but the defense came up and played well when they had to," Holt said. "Mario (Arellano) played well in goal. He made a couple of key saves and made the not-so simple ones look easy."

Holt also praised the play of the back line of Jesus Torres, Rodrigo Larios and Victor Medina.

"Overall, it was a good team effort. When it gets down to the last 10 minutes, we're kind of bunkered in," he explained. "They've got some big, fast, physical athletes, but I think we met the challenge. We didn't back down and played hard. I think that's the reason we won the game."

The victory puts SSHS atop the District 16-4A standings with Mount Pleasant with three points each. Pleasant Grove, which beat Texas High in a shootout on Tuesday, has two points and is the Wildcats' next opponent.

Sulphur Springs will travel to Pleasant Grove on Friday for a doubleheader starting with the JV at 5:30 p.m. and the varsity at 7:15 p.m. Then, the Wildcats will host Mount Pleasant on Monday in an always heated match.

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