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Varsity Soccer Mustangs Take Second In VOL Play
Eleven soccer seniors were recognized for dedication and commitment to their high school team on Wednesday night. DENNIS D. CRUZ/THE LEADER


The defending Sac-Joaquin Section champion Mustangs varsity soccer team ended the regular season with a pair of victories. Oakdale doubled up Weston Ranch 4-2 on Monday, Oct. 26 and followed up with a 2-1 edging of Central Catholic for Senior Night 2015 on Wednesday, Oct. 28.

Monday night was a battle of two powerhouse teams in the Valley Oak League (VOL) when the eventual VOL champion Cougars came to town. The Mustangs and Cougars were tied at 1-1 heading into the break after a goal by Juan Arias of Oakdale.

“At the break, I told the boys to stay focused and take advantage of their (Weston Ranch) mistakes and execute when we have the opportunity to,” Mustangs coach Alfredo Quiroga recalled.

Oakdale’s offense exploded in the second half, outscoring the visitors 3-1 down the stretch. Second half goals by Zidane Saucedo, David Serrano and Wesley Allen powered the Mustangs past the Cougars. Allen added two assists and Collin Harrity also had an assist in the team’s win.

“We wanted that game real bad. Everybody on the team was focused and prepared to play great soccer. The boys came through big time,” Quiroga praised of his athletes.

Goalkeepers Nathan Richardson and Jose Solis combined for seven saves in the contest.

Two days later, 11 seniors were honored during pregame festivities against Central Catholic.

“They are a special group. A lot of them have been playing together for years, even before varsity soccer on travel teams. They are all very good kids,” Quiroga said.

The seniors made the most of their going away party as Derrick Pennington and Jacob Pierson each found the net in the first half. Fellow senior Michael Arauza added an assist to help lift the Mustangs to a win in their 2015 regular season finale.

“I am very glad that the seniors scored the goals and had the assist, very well deserved,” said Quiroga.

Oakdale finished the regular season with a league record of 10-1-3 to finish second behind Weston Ranch (11-2-1). The Mustangs are the number two seed in the 2015 CIF Sac-Joaquin DIII Boys Soccer Bracket. In their bracket are some familiar faces: Weston Ranch (one seed), Patterson (three seed) and East Union (six seed). Oakdale’s quest for back-to-back Section Championships began on Tuesday, Nov. 3 when Oakdale welcomed the 15th seeded Mira Loma. The game was held after The Leader’s press time. If the Mustangs are successful, the team will host the winner of seventh seeded Rio Americano and tenth seeded Cordova. The game would be held at OHS on Thursday, Nov. 5 at 6:30 p.m.