Brahmas upset No. 1 seed

BOYS SOCCER Finishing third in league, the team will be heading to the second round of CIF.


Eric Hong

Junior Sebastian Jeon takes the ball down the pitch against South Hills.

Pauline Villegas, A&E Editor

Although the Diamond Bar High School boys soccer team had a rough start to its season, with consecutive losses in its first few games, the Brahmas managed to clinch a spot in CIF and upset No.1 seed Santiago in their first round,  1-0.

The game-winning goal was scored in double overtime by senior Christian Valdez, who was assisted by a corner kick from senior Jacob Foley. Senior goalie Tommy Ramos shutout Santiago with eight saves.

The team will play in the second round of CIF today.

Much has changed within the team’s dynamic from last season. Although the team did better last year in league competition, they experienced some off-field tension.

“Last year we had a lot of attitude problems, people were only playing for themselves and not for their team. I can see that now, as the years gone by, we’ve grown more and we are actually playing as a team now,” Foley said.

With the loss of several key players through graduation, the boys did not have such a hot start in league, losing their first three games against South Hills, Claremont and Glendora. However, a win against Ayala turned the season around and they finished with an overall 5-5 record.

“There were a lot of spots to fill, we lost the majority of our starting lineup, so we started off pretty rough. We were just trying to figure out who should go where and what combinations worked. Eventually, we were able to overcome that,” junior captain Nicholas Wong said.

After bonding off of the field, they managed to figure out where each of the individual players’ strengths would work best for the rest of the team on the field.

“Position wise, a lot changed in where everyone was playing and whether they had to be more offensive or defensive,” senior Chad Montoya said.

Since the team has made CIF, they hope to focus more on skill and staying on task throughout practice.

“At practice we need to be more serious. We tend to fool around, but I think we need to increase our pre-game intensity,” Foley said.

The team is not planning on participating in any tournaments after competing in CIF. As for next year, losing seniors will again be hard for the team.

“Senior Ryan Hernandez was one of the players that contributed most this year. He is one of our captains and he’s played many different positions. He has great ball control and he is very aware of his surroundings on the field. Overall he’s been one of the best players on our team,” Wong said.

The Brahmas are  preparing for not only CIF but also next season; the team is looking for some underclassmen to step up.

Players like juniors Peter Larcheveque and Sebastian Jeon stood out on the pitch after playing their first year on varsity, according to Foley and Montoya.

“I feel like we will still have a lot of talent next year and there are lots of underclassmen that have a lot of potential,” Wong said.