Login to Claremont COURIER

CHS Boys overpower visiting Ravens 3-1 in CIF action

Within two minutes of the boys’ soccer match, senior midfielder Jack Blomberg started the opening act by striking the ball passed Vista Del Lago High’s goalkeeper, allowing the Wolfpack to dominate the game.

Even with a 2-0 lead in the first half, CHS did not give show weakness after beating the Ravens in the first round of CIF Finals, 3-1, on Thursday night. The Ravens managed to make their only goal within the last two minutes of the match, so junior Tomás Negritto was still thrilled by the Wolfpack’s overall effort.

“Our main skill here was pressuring hard,” Negritto said. “It was like we stepped down on them and they couldn’t do anything.”

Like every player representing CHS, Negritto pulled every maneuver to have the Wolfpack high on the scoreboard. Within the 56-minute mark, sophomore midfielder Nick Loeffler kicks the ball high for Negritto to make the team’s final goal.

“I didn’t expect that to happen,” Negritto said. “I just went for a slide and it went in. We had to do anything for a goal.”

The Ravens did have some close calls to keep fans at bay. But senior goalkeeper Bryan Landgreen managed to stop any attempt of the ball passing him.

Some teammates also backed up Landgreen when he was preoccupied with Ravens fluttering everywhere. Junior Austin Antillon made a quick dive to divert a goal shot and had the Wolfpack return charging.

Within the 28-minute mark, senior foward Cameron Lorek set the ball perfectly in the air, surprising the Ravens with such great play. Looking at their confused-looking faces, senior Javon Turner knew it was time to take the shot, making it 2-0.

“I knew Cameron was looking for me and I make a couple steps to get ahead,” Turner said. “We practiced this every time.”

Along with strong, nonverbal communication, the Wolfpack planned every maneuver to ensure victory. Whether it was quick passes between players to spread the Ravens’ defense, or play well-thought out and precise, CHS is ready to march forward.

“We tried to keep possession,” Turner said. “Our home is really small and we wanted them to get tired and run around.”

Head coach Fred Bruce-Oliver remained resistant to cheer prematurely, remembering different scenarios in the regular season when the Wolfpack could have done better. But watching them win in such overpowering fashion, can only mean the best is yet to come.

“You never expect that type of win in playoff games,” coach Bruce-Oliver said. “A win is a win and every time we will take it.”

The Wolfpack will either face San Clemente High or Temecula Valley High February 25, in the second round of CIF competition. The time and location has yet to be determined.

—Alex Forbess

Current Issue
Archived Print Issues