Sports

Pleasanton Preps: Falcons lose heartbreaker in penalties in NCS girls' soccer playoffs

Amador also out in tight quarterfinal; opposing coach ejection stalls game

The Foothill girls' soccer team stands opposite Cal High for the national anthem before their NCS postseason showdown. The Grizzlies would win the match in penalty kicks. (Photo by Lacey Meyers)

The Foothill High girls' soccer team carried its late-season momentum that got them into the North Coast Sections playoffs over into their opening match victory before losing in the next round in a heartbreaker.

As the No. 13 seed, Foothill was sent on the road to Mill Valley for a match with No. 4 seed Tamalpais on Feb. 16, and the Falcons pulled off the 2-1 upset.

Tamalpais got the best of play in the first half, but thanks to outstanding play from Sadie Brown in the goal, Foothill was able to keep close, trailing 1-0 at the break.

Senior defender Niki Kincaid cleared two balls off the goal line, with both plays keeping the Falcons from going down by two goals.

In the second half, the Falcons drew even early.

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Samantha Lim got the ball to Sophia Minnite, who in turn got it to Kiana Tahmassebi and the junior put it away to square it at 1-1.

With the momentum clearly shifted to Foothill, it seemed like when, not if, the Falcons would get the game-winner.

As the final minutes ticked off the clock, Minnite hit a 30-yard through-ball to Emma Harbourne, who beat the sliding Tamalpais goalie and put it home to send the Falcons to the quarterfinals.

In a matchup of teams that pulled upsets in the first round, the Falcons went to San Ramon to face No. 12 seed California in the quarters.

The first half ended 0-0 thanks to some nice saves from Brown and yet another clear off the goal line from Kincaid.

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The second half saw Foothill control the flow of the game, but the Falcons had apparent goals from Ava Ricker and Tahmassebi called back for offsides.

That left the final score 0-0, and the two teams were pushed to settle the game in kicks from the penalty spot after two over time periods resulted in no goals being scored.

Makenna Meyers, Kaitlyn Lemus and Brown all made their kicks, but Cal made four of their attempts and walked off with the win.

Amador girls' soccer

The Dons -- the No. 3 seed -- opened NCS play with a big 8-0 win over No. 14 San Leandro.

The balanced Amador attack saw 14 different players register at least one shot on goal, led by six shots from Maddie Benson, and four each from Angel Akanyirige and Natalie O'Sullivan.

Freshman forward Maylen Montoya scored twice, as did junior midfielder Parker Brown. The keeper team had five saves.

The win sent Amador into the quarters where the faced East Bay Athletic League rival and No. 6 seed San Ramon Valley.

The two teams went back and forth, but neither could find the net in the first half and at the break it was 0-0.

The Wolves got on the board early in the second half, with the Dons drawing even late in the game when O'Sullivan put home a free kick from 25 yards out.

About that time, the San Ramon Valley fans were hurling comments at an Amador freshman. When the player asked the Wolves coach to control the fans, the coach responded with profanity and was ejected from the game, which had to be stopped until the coach left the stadium.

The game stayed tied at 1-1 at the end of regulation, forcing the teams into overtime.

Early on a San Ramon Valley player made a move into the penalty area where an Amador player made what appeared to be a fair challenge for the ball. The referee saw otherwise and called a foul on the Amador defender, awarding the Wolves a penalty kick.

The kick was converted, and the Wolves had a 2-1 win and a spot in the semifinals.

Amador vs. Foothill on the hardwood

The Dons and the Falcons met for the third time this year -- Amador won both previous meetings -- but the third time was the charm for Foothill as they came away with a 55-33 win in the first round of the NCS playoffs.

Foothill led 21-17 at the break, but blew the game open, outscoring the Dons 34-16 over the last two quarters. Damascus Shields had 16 to lead Foothill. Isaiah Minor had 14 and Jake Clevenger 12 to round out the top Foothill scorers.

Jesse Huang had nine and Colton Cash 8 for Amador.

Editor's note: Dennis Miller is a contributing sports writer for the Pleasanton Weekly. To contact him about his Pleasanton Preps column, email [email protected]

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Pleasanton Preps: Falcons lose heartbreaker in penalties in NCS girls' soccer playoffs

Amador also out in tight quarterfinal; opposing coach ejection stalls game

by Dennis Miller / Pleasanton Weekly

Uploaded: Mon, Feb 28, 2022, 9:35 am

The Foothill High girls' soccer team carried its late-season momentum that got them into the North Coast Sections playoffs over into their opening match victory before losing in the next round in a heartbreaker.

As the No. 13 seed, Foothill was sent on the road to Mill Valley for a match with No. 4 seed Tamalpais on Feb. 16, and the Falcons pulled off the 2-1 upset.

Tamalpais got the best of play in the first half, but thanks to outstanding play from Sadie Brown in the goal, Foothill was able to keep close, trailing 1-0 at the break.

Senior defender Niki Kincaid cleared two balls off the goal line, with both plays keeping the Falcons from going down by two goals.

In the second half, the Falcons drew even early.

Samantha Lim got the ball to Sophia Minnite, who in turn got it to Kiana Tahmassebi and the junior put it away to square it at 1-1.

With the momentum clearly shifted to Foothill, it seemed like when, not if, the Falcons would get the game-winner.

As the final minutes ticked off the clock, Minnite hit a 30-yard through-ball to Emma Harbourne, who beat the sliding Tamalpais goalie and put it home to send the Falcons to the quarterfinals.

In a matchup of teams that pulled upsets in the first round, the Falcons went to San Ramon to face No. 12 seed California in the quarters.

The first half ended 0-0 thanks to some nice saves from Brown and yet another clear off the goal line from Kincaid.

The second half saw Foothill control the flow of the game, but the Falcons had apparent goals from Ava Ricker and Tahmassebi called back for offsides.

That left the final score 0-0, and the two teams were pushed to settle the game in kicks from the penalty spot after two over time periods resulted in no goals being scored.

Makenna Meyers, Kaitlyn Lemus and Brown all made their kicks, but Cal made four of their attempts and walked off with the win.

Amador girls' soccer

The Dons -- the No. 3 seed -- opened NCS play with a big 8-0 win over No. 14 San Leandro.

The balanced Amador attack saw 14 different players register at least one shot on goal, led by six shots from Maddie Benson, and four each from Angel Akanyirige and Natalie O'Sullivan.

Freshman forward Maylen Montoya scored twice, as did junior midfielder Parker Brown. The keeper team had five saves.

The win sent Amador into the quarters where the faced East Bay Athletic League rival and No. 6 seed San Ramon Valley.

The two teams went back and forth, but neither could find the net in the first half and at the break it was 0-0.

The Wolves got on the board early in the second half, with the Dons drawing even late in the game when O'Sullivan put home a free kick from 25 yards out.

About that time, the San Ramon Valley fans were hurling comments at an Amador freshman. When the player asked the Wolves coach to control the fans, the coach responded with profanity and was ejected from the game, which had to be stopped until the coach left the stadium.

The game stayed tied at 1-1 at the end of regulation, forcing the teams into overtime.

Early on a San Ramon Valley player made a move into the penalty area where an Amador player made what appeared to be a fair challenge for the ball. The referee saw otherwise and called a foul on the Amador defender, awarding the Wolves a penalty kick.

The kick was converted, and the Wolves had a 2-1 win and a spot in the semifinals.

Amador vs. Foothill on the hardwood

The Dons and the Falcons met for the third time this year -- Amador won both previous meetings -- but the third time was the charm for Foothill as they came away with a 55-33 win in the first round of the NCS playoffs.

Foothill led 21-17 at the break, but blew the game open, outscoring the Dons 34-16 over the last two quarters. Damascus Shields had 16 to lead Foothill. Isaiah Minor had 14 and Jake Clevenger 12 to round out the top Foothill scorers.

Jesse Huang had nine and Colton Cash 8 for Amador.

Editor's note: Dennis Miller is a contributing sports writer for the Pleasanton Weekly. To contact him about his Pleasanton Preps column, email [email protected]

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