After finishing the preseason with a 5-2-1 record, the Lady Trojans headed into Wednesday night’s match looking to start off league play with a victory at home.
With the help of two goals by junior Haley Garvey and another outstanding performance by senior goalkeeper Vanessa Gomez, edged Lynbrook in a 3-1 victory in the team’s first league game.
“It wasn’t our best game, but it was a good way to start off league,” Gomez said after the game. “We feel like we’re going to get a lot more league wins, so this was a good start for us.Milpitas attacked Lynbrook early with pressure coming from the home team’s speedy offense and controlled play with their aggressive ball control.
The Lady Trojans struck first with two goals by junior Haley Garvey. Freshman Sarina Bolden, who is the team’s leading scorer, assisted on both goals.
Milpitas headed into halftime with a 2-0 lead and had the visiting team on its heels.
“We went out there with a lot of enthusiasm and I think the girls definitely came ready to play,” said Milpitas Coach Michael Tomlin. “Our approach to the game was good and I thought our performance was really solid in the first half.”
Lynbrook came out in the second half looking like a new team and got off three quick shots against Milpitas with Gomez stranded away from the net. Luckily for the Lady Trojans, the Vikings failed to tap in an empty-net goal.
Milpitas relied on Gomez to come up with big saves as Lynbrook continued to squeeze past the defense and test the home goalkeeper.
The Vikings finally tallied a goal after a missed shot appeared to hit off the football goal post behind the Milpitas net and bounced back onto the field to a Lynbrook player who tapped it in for the goal to make the score 2-1.
Coaches and players on the Milpitas side argued that the play should have been blown dead because the ball was out of bounds, but the referees said the ball hit off the crossbar and not the field goal upright.
“We all thought we saw it go over the net and hit the football upright,” Coach Tomlin said. “The ref said it didn’t. And you know, those things just happen sometimes.”
The blown call didn’t faze the home team as the Lady Trojans marched back up the field and scored minutes later off a corner kick.
Senior Natalie Minor footed a perfect kick down the middle to sophomore Belen Acosta who headed the ball past the Vikings goalkeeper.
The goal put Milpitas up 3-1 and while Lynbrook had a few late chances, the Lady Trojans were able to hold onto top their lead and earn their first league win of the season.
Coach Tomlin said his team’s positive attitude and strong work ethic from the preseason carried over into their first league game of the season.
“We’re looking to get first place in league and win a championship. And in order to do that, we feel like we have to win every game because it’s always a tight competition for us,” he said.
Milpitas plays two games next week, as the Lady Trojans head to Cupertino to play against Homestead on Jan. 11 and return two days later to face Fremont High-Sunnyvale.