Although Diamond Bar High School boys varsity soccer had a shaky start at the beginning of the season, they were able to have a satisfying end to their season. They ended with a league record of 3-5-2 and an overall record of 4-9-4. They tied with Don Lugo 1-1 in their last league game and won 2-0 against Ontario and Chaffey.
“We won that game [against Ontario] 2-0 from goals from me and junior Justin Bortis,” sophomore Thomas Gomez said via Instagram. “That game, we all played really well and everyone was ready to step on the field and give it their all.”
The tied game against Don Lugo was tough compared to the others and was the deciding factor on whether or not the team would make it to CIF as a wildcard. Sophomore Jackson Haynes scored one point for the Brahmas.
“The first half of the season was challenging because…there were a lot of different distractions that we had, as we were trying to build a cohesive unit,” head coach Pete Orosco said. “But in the middle of the season the boys absolutely turned it around, and I was very excited to see them play at that level of soccer.”
The team also had insufficient time to prepare for the new season and work with their new coach. With four weeks to prepare, some of the things they accomplished during this short amount of time were distributing positions among the teammates as well as position numbers. The coaches also took time to teach the Brahmas how to transition into new systems of play.
“I thought the team did really well even with having a new coach this season,” senior Ethan Lu said via Instagram. “We had little time to work with the new coach, and I am really pleased to where we ended up as a team.”
Team captains juniors AJ McElera and Bortis both demonstrated good defensive skills as well as leadership skills.
“They were the chosen team captains because we wanted to have young men who could lead by example,” Orosco said. “AJ did an exceptional job running defense and making sure that teammates were communicating and defending well.”
Some other players who did well this season include Haynes and senior Thomas Avila. Both Haynes and Avila excelled as midfielders throughout league.
“Haynes was one of the bigger surprises with me with his defensive skills and his position that I put him to play which was holding midfielder,” Orsoco said. “Seniors like Hani Baba and Thomas Avila also had some exceptional games.”