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La Cañada girls' soccer continues hot start with win against Burbank

Soccer: Spartans score two second-half goals to earn 3-1 nonleague home win against Bulldogs.

December 10, 2013|By Jeff Tully, jeff.tully@latimes.com
(Tim Berger Staff…)

LA CAÑADA — On several occasions Tuesday during a nonleague match against Burbank High, the La Cañada girls' soccer team did a good job at exploiting the Bulldogs defense.

The Spartans constantly worked their way behind the Burbank defenders, which resulted in their share of breakaways and scoring opportunities.

However, despite the opportunities, La Cañada couldn't tally a goal throughout most of the first half. The Spartans finally did hit pay dirt with two minutes to go in the opening half and then had a little more luck with two additional goals in the first 21 minutes of the second to post a 3-1 victory against the visiting Bulldogs.

The win is the fifth straight to open the season for the Spartans (5-0), who have a relatively young squad with five seniors.

"We have had some success so far, but we're still not playing to where I think we should be," La Cañada Coach Louie Bilowitz said. "The forwards still haven't learned to make the types of runs that I'm asking for. We are distributing the ball correctly, but they're not anticipating where the ball's going to be and they are just reacting and then it's too late.

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"It's going to take awhile, but they are going to get it. I was happy with the result, but not necessarily happy with the way we played today."

With one of his key defenders unable to play Tuesday because of a choir commitment, Burbank Coach Eric Montoya had to switch some players around.

"With that player not there, that was a big, big impact on our team," said Montoya, whose team slipped to 2-1-1. "We played a freshman in her first game and that might have led to a couple of mistakes, like not pushing up when we needed her to push up. But it's learning pains for her and she's only going to learn from that."

The defensive problems for Burbank were apparent early in the first half, as the Spartans had several opportunities to score. In a 10-minute span, La Cañada's Katrina Davis had two solid opportunities to score, but both chances were stuffed by Burbank goalkeeper Allison Tiegs.

It was Tiegs that helped the Bulldogs stay in the game in the first half, as she made eight of her 11 saves in the stanza.

Burbank's Dakota Briseno had two scoring chances in the first half, but a free kick from 23 yards out in the ninth minute sailed over the crossbar and a hard shot from 10 yards out in the 12th minute was saved by Spartans keeper Kristen Becker.

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