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October 22, 2008 > Newark Earthquakes open with a resounding victory

Newark Earthquakes open with a resounding victory

Submitted By Dorian Decius

Two of the top teams in the Boys Under-12 Bronze Division of the Golden State Soccer League battled it out early in the season on Newark Sportsfield at Sillaman Center. The home town Newark Earthquakes hosted the unbeaten and untied Diablo FC 96 Blue team, which had racked up an impressive 4-0-0 record heading into Saturday's match. The Earthquakes had won just one game followed by two ties and a loss, which was good enough for third place in the standings.

The Earthquakes began the game with a full team but Diablo FC was down one player and started with ten. Newark had many early chances to score but could not find the back of the net. Moments after adding their eleventh player, Diablo FC took the lead, 1-0, fourteen minutes into the match off their first shot of the game with a nicely placed shot to the upper-right corner of the goal. Newark bounced back in the twenty-fourth minute when Ernesto Silva split two defenders and neatly tucked a left-footed shot into the upper right corner of the net to tie the score at 1-1.Luke Lombana was strong in goal for the Earthquakes, making several point-blank saves to keep the score close. In the final minute of the first half, Romario Zelaya sent a curling corner kick to the far post and Tommy Gallagher's header was ruled a goal despite a valiant effort by the Diablo FC keeper to stop the shot from crossing the line. The half ended 2-1 in favor of Newark.

With the increasing Newark wind, the Diablo FC squad gained a small advantage and in doing so, controlled much of the early action in the second half. Devin Strouse, Steve Silva and Eddie Higueres of the Earthquakes defensive unit kept the skilled Diablo FC forwards in check, making several key clearances at the last moment. After several times being whistled for offsides, Earthquakes' forward Andrew Veloza broke through on a feed from Ernesto Silva to extend the margin to 3-1.A number of close calls for Diablo FC did not produce a second half goal. After many skillful plays by both teams, with the clock winding down, Veloza beat the Diablo keeper and a defender to the ball and at the last moment nudged a left-footed shot past the keeper and into the net to make the score 4-1.Ryan Wilson played inspiring ball at striker in the waning moments, producing a jarring collision with the keeper, after which he stayed with the play and deflected the clearing attempt from going out of bounds, came back, won the ball a moment later and was taken down in the penalty area to give the Earthquakes a penalty kick. Coming back from the intense collision, the Diablo FC keeper held strong and saved the penalty kick by Lombana. The rematch at season's end should be another exciting, end-to-end battle.

The Newark Earthquakes is made up of the following players and coaches:
Andrew V., Miles B., Ryan C., Ryan W., Tommy G., Ernesto S., Steve S., Devon S., Eddie H., Hector M., Luke L., Ramario Z., Travis W. and Vicente P. Coaches Rossi, Bradford, Ann Lombana and Andy Stuart.

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