ROSWELL — A lopsided loss in the fifth-place game failed to put a damper on a day that included Clovis’ first win of the soccer season.
The Wildcats defeated Las Vegas Robertson 4-2 on Saturday in the consolation semifinals, which also gave first-year coach Larry Jones his first win. Freshman Jordan Garrett scored twice to go along with tallies from Jessica Roark and Racquel DeLeon in the win over the Cardinals.
“I felt really happy. I think we did a really good job — we talked and played as a family,” said DeLeon immediately after the loss to the Cavegirls. “Right now, this game, we didn’t do too well — we weren’t playing together.”
Carlsbad routed Clovis 8-1 in the fifth-place game in the eight-team tournament.
Carlsbad (3-2) scored first less than five minutes into the contest. Clovis keeper Jessica Doss strayed far away from the goal, the Cavegirls’ Courtney Rogers got an easy opportunity for a rebound score after teammate Carolyn Garcia missed the first shot at the open net.
A minute later, a corner kick by Carlsbad’s Cindi McKinley was converted by Courtney Rogers into a 2-0 lead.
Although Carlsbad seemed firmly in control, Clovis (1-6) cut the margin in half at the 28-minute mark on Roark’s penalty kick.
A foul was called on Carlsbad defender Kristen Daly, who was trying to stop an attack by Melissa Ridege. Roark sent the ball past Cavegirls keeper Stephanie McGary.
After that point, Carlsbad dominated play, taking advantage of Clovis’ offside trap defense.
“We also run the trap quite a bit, so we know what to do with it — we practice it quite often,” Carlsbad coach Bob Rostro said. “After we recognized it, we ran (plays) a little bit differently. It did work — we had a few more breakaways.”
The besieged Doss registered 24 saves, but the Clovis coach said that kind of save total wasn’t exactly a good sign.
“I would love to get her down to a half-dozen or less saves a game, it would make her job a lot better,” Jones said.
Jones wasn’t happy with the effort displayed by Clovis during the Carlsbad contest in the first half. But, as Clovis gave up only two goals in the second half — compared to the six before intermission, the Wildcats’ coach took some encouragement in that.
“We played better in the second half than we did in the first half,” Jones said. “Hopefully, if we can put a complete game together, we’re going to be all right.”