TRUCKEE, California – After dropping their first Division 3A North contest, the Elko boys soccer team settled for a 1-1 record on their first league road trip.
Elko pulled off a 1-0 victory Friday over the 2017 Division 3A North regular-season champs at North Tahoe, but the Indians were decimated Saturday in a 6-1 loss to Truckee.
Versus North Tahoe
Elko began the game by playing defensively against North Tahoe, a team coach Alonso Lujan described as “fast and athletic.”
“It was a pretty intense game. North Tahoe plays hard, nor dirty – but they are constantly attacking,” he said.
The Indians actually had a goal taken off the board, which would have been the first score of the game in the first half.
“We lost a goal in the first half. Under the new rule this year, a ball that is deflected off of someone is not supposed to be ruled offside,” Lujan said. “The ball bounced to Natu (Meles) and a goal was taken away from him.”
Although the Indians lost the lead-changing goal, the Elko defense held the Lakers scoreless – despite escaping a near miss in the opening minutes on a rocket shot by Michael Callejas that bounced off the crossbar.
“He’s really good, he’s there best player but we shut them down,” Lujan said. “They started getting frustrated in the second half and started playing long balls instead of keeping the ball on the ground.”
As North Tahoe began looking for the home run, the Indians started counter-attacking.
“They made a mistake and we went down the field, and Josue Aguirre (junior) scored for us in the 65th minute,” Lujan said. “After that, I focused on playing defense and dropped everyone back. I only left two strikers up top for countering.”
Elko’s defense preserved the shutout, but Lujan said the victory took a lot out of his team.
“North Tahoe’s physicality wore us down,” he said.
The Indians earned their first victory in league play by a final score of 1-0.
After playing so hard Friday against North Tahoe, Elko had little left in the tank for Saturday’s match at Truckee.
The Indians actually experienced a solid start, taking the lead five minutes into the game.
A corner kick by senior Eddy Sainz assisted a goal by junior forward Raul Cortez, giving Elko a 1-0 advantage.
From then on, it was all Truckee.
“I had to pull Jorge (Landeros) because of a stomach illness, and I took out Natu because of his ankle that he’s been fighting with all year,” Lujan said. “Those guys were dominating, but we got dominated after that.”
Lujan said the Wolverines scored two goals in the first half, taking a 2-1 lead at the break.
In the second half, Truckee went off and punched in four more scores for a 6-1 victory.
“I think we were worn out from the North Tahoe game,” said Lujan. “Truckee probably possessed the ball 70 or 80 percent of the time. I think the game will be a lot different when they come to Elko.”
The Indians dropped to 1-2 in the Division 3A North and will host Incline at 5 p.m. Friday, at Adobe Middle School – closing the home stand with a noon start on Saturday versus South Tahoe.
In the meantime, the Indians will play a non-conference game at 4 p.m. MST on Wednesday against the Wolverines, in West Wendover.