To knock off East Central 2A Conference leader James Kenan, Spring Creek needed to play 80 minutes of solid soccer.
Spring Creek turned in 40 strong minutes against the Tigers on Monday evening, but James Kenan scored four goals in the second half and defeated the Gators 6-2.
“The normal person is going to pick up the paper and see we lost 6-2, but deep in our hearts, we were telling the boys that it was a lot closer than that,” Spring Creek head coach Miguel Torres said. “There are times where we could’ve gone ahead in the game, and we didn’t take advantage of our opportunities, and they did.”
Down 2-0 late in the first half, Spring Creek asserted itself in the 38th minute.
Off a corner kick from Adrian Tavrera, Josue Sanchez Inestroza recovered the ball and slipped it past James Kenan’s goalie to get the Gators on the board.
Two minutes later, Spring Creek tied the game when Oswaldo Escudero scored a goal off Jonah Velasquez-Perez’s assist.
“We knew our game plan, and I told the boys we were fine going down 1-0 or 2-0 because we’ve our opportunities,” Torres said. “I told them not to let the score go to their heads.
“We settled in and started playing our style of soccer.”
With the score tied 2-2 at halftime, Spring Creek seemingly had all the momentum heading into the second half, but James Kenan snatched the momentum back from the Gators.
In the 44th minute, James Kenan took back the lead, and the Tigers scored three more goals midway through the second half to get the win.
James Kenan held a 12-4 advantage in shots on goal in the game.
“Credit to James Kenan because they are ranked the number one 2A team in the state,” Torres said. “We knew they were going to come back with the fire, and we just weren’t ready for the pace they set early in the second half.”
Seniors Jeffrey Lopez, Sanchez Inestroza, Carlos Mendoza Castro, Edgar Juarez Perez, and Victor Vega all played their final game in Gators’ jersey.
And Torres thanked his seniors for their four years of hard work and dedication to the boys’ soccer team.
“It’s heartwarming to see because I’ve known all of them since they were in ninth grade,” Torres said. “I know they’re going to move onto bigger and better things, but we’re glad they stuck with our program.”
Spring Creek finishes the season with a 4-6 overall record, but Torres said the future is bright for the Gators.
“We’re excited for the future every year,” Torres said. “We know we’re going to bring a competitive team every year.”