A three-goal second half effort helped lift the Oakdale High School varsity soccer boys to a 6-2 win over Central Catholic. The regular season finale not only saw victory and joy but was also full of celebration prior to game time.
Eight senior players were honored before the start of the game for Senior Night. Juan Mata, Eric Anaya, CJ Glow, Manuel Garcia, Dylan Oliver, Dayne Sturtevant, Miguel Casillas and Daniel Dubiel were all honored and recognized for their contributions to the OHS boys soccer program. They were welcomed in front of their friends, family, fans and supporters on Tuesday night, Feb. 5.
“We as seniors took it as one more opportunity to play in front of our home crowd. Nerves were not really there, for me anyway,” said Sturtevant.
Following the festivities Oakdale took the field for the final time in the regular season as they hosted Central Catholic. It didn’t take the Mustangs long to take the lead as Sturtevant scored within the first three minutes of the contest to go up 1-0. Sturtevant made the most of his senior night as he went on to add two more goals for Oakdale in the win. Fellow senior Glow scored two goals and sophomore Alexis Aguilar scored one. Luis Soto, a freshman, had three assists in the Valley Oak League victory.
Goalkeeper Daniel Dubiel had four saves for Oakdale.
“The second half was big for us and I think the difference was the way the team started to play with more trust and chemistry,” said head coach Alfredo Quiroga.
Oakdale completed the season sweep over the Raiders, as they had previously defeated Central Catholic 4-1 on Jan. 10. With the win in hand, Oakdale finished in fourth place in the Valley Oak League standings. They were tapped as the No. 15 seed in the Division III playoffs and were scheduled to travel to face off against No. 2 Ceres on Tuesday, Feb. 12 after The Leader went to press. A win there would put Oakdale into the second round on Thursday, Feb. 14 against the winner of the first round No. 7 Golden Valley-No. 10 Laguna Creek match.
Coming off their 3-2 loss to Kimball, Oakdale finished the season off strong with a 13-0 runaway victory over Central Catholic. Six of the team’s goals were scored by Juan “Pina” Martinez. Also scoring for Oakdale were two goals by Riley Blount, and solo goals by Lex Bairos, Lucas Cox, Ryan Kraus and Ryan Greenhow.
“It was a rough start of the season for us with canceled practice and preseason games due to air quality,” said head coach Jaime Martinez. “We lost the only three preseason games that we were able to play but came together very quickly after that to have a solid season with mostly freshmen on the roster.”
Oakdale finished the season in second place of the VOL with an overall league record of 8-3-1.
“I am proud of all of them for not letting those early games get them down, and for helping each other learn and grow throughout the season to make it successful,” added Martinez.