A strong offensive attack in the first half led South Tama's boys soccer team to a much-needed victory Thursday at Iowa Falls.
The Trojans racked up five goals during the first half of action, which would be enough. However, a late pair of goals by Iowa Falls tightened the score much too close. STC held on for the win, beating Iowa Falls 5-4.
"It was a good win for the boys as they are settling into the offense and our passing was much improved," head coach Dave Chizek said.
South Tama opened the scoring of the game during the eighth-minute. Adrian Castanon booted a corner kick and Erik Barajas was waiting at the back post. Barajas headed the ball into the net, giving STC a 1-0 lead early in the game.
The Trojans attacked again quickly. One minute after the first goal, Jose Ramirez found Barajas in the middle of field. Barajas scored his second goal with a shot from 22 yards out.
Iowa Falls answered back with its first goal four minutes later. A long clear by Iowa Falls sailed passed the outstretched arms of STC's goal Luis Perez. STC still led 2-1.
Both teams exchanged goals later in the half. Ramirez took possession of the ball down the right side of the field. He took a shot from 16 yards out and found the net. Iowa Falls answered again after STC's back line failed to clear the ball deep enough. Iowa Falls took advantage and closed the score to 3-2.
South Tama wasn't finished scoring for the half. During the 38th-minute, Alex Martinez chipped a ball into the box, which appeared as if it was going to be collected by the Iowa Falls goalkeeper. However, Ramirez made a quick sprint to the ball and took a shot before the goalkeeper could pick it up.
One minute later, Castanon again assisted Barajas on a goal. Castanon's cross found Barajas, who scored his third goal and earned himself a hat trick.
The Trojans continued attacking during the second half, but couldn't find the net. Several players had close calls, including James Lares, Mason Taylor, Castanon, Martinez and Ramirez. Iowa Falls scored twice in the 62nd and 73rd minutes. STC held on to win the game, 5-4.
"We started the game with a team plan and stayed with it," Chizek said. "Opening up the midfield with winger runs and passes really benefited us."
Starting the game for South Tama was Luis Perez in goal; Moises Fonseca, Eric Rodriges, Mason Taylor and Jose Alcazar in defense; Erik Barajas, Fernando Galvez, James Lares and Alex Martinez in the mid-field; and Jose Ramirez and Adrian Castanon as forwards. Wyatt Beltz, Dwayne Johnson, David Shadden and Daniel Garcia were the subs for the Trojans.