After 15 games this season, Lemoore boys soccer forward Joshua Roa has found the back of the net more than anyone else.
According to MaxPreps, Roa leads the West Yosemite League with 18 goals. Maybe more remarkable is Roa, a senior, has played only 10 games this season and was scoreless in one, so he’s actually scored all 18 of his goals in nine games.
Alexis Cabrera from Redwood is second with 16 goals and he’s played 12 games in the season.
Roa also leads the league in points with 37 — two points for each goal and one point per assist. His offensive presence has helped the Tigers climb to a 9-6 record overall and 1-1 record in the WYL.
“It makes it a lot easier for our offense because you know he’s always a threat when he’s up there, especially with his speed and ball handling skills,” Eric Bow said. “He just needs a small space and he’s got a shot off on goal.”
Bow, Lemoore’s first-year head coach, emphasized that Roa’s speed and ball handling are a rare ability that allows him to get into good scoring positions. “It just takes a little move to beat a defender … he can quickly strike it,” Bow said.
In Lemoore’s last game against Mt. Whitney on Friday, Roa got the scoring started again in the first half. His team would go on to lose 3-2 in the second period of overtime, but his goal was just the latest example of Roa’s ability.
“It was a ball that was put through toward their keeper and Josh sprinted and got to it just before the keeper slid,” Bow said. “He pulled it out and then it was just a little push into an open net.”
With 10 games to go in league, Bow believes Roa will continue his scoring touch. He expects multiple goal games against some of the weaker teams in league such as Mt. Whitney and Hanford.
Against some of the tougher competition, such as Redwood and Golden West, he’s expecting defenders and coaches to send double teams his way. He knows Roa will face much more physical contact as well.
“In those games it may be more difficult to break away and get open,” Bow said. “But like I said before, with his speed it just takes one little ball and he can outrun a lot of people.”
Sierra Pacific vs. Caruthers
HANFORD — The Golden Bears survived a thriller on Friday when they won 5-4 over Caruthers in extra time.
Gavin Vangronigen netted the game-winner in the 96th minute, which also gave him a hat trick on the day. Vangronigen also gave his team the lead in the 72nd minute to put them up 4-3 before Caruthers tied the game again.
Caruthers actually had a 3-2 lead at halftime, but Sierra Pacific was able to knot it up. Zach Barber and Aziel Torres were the other two goal scorers for Sierra Pacific.
The Golden Bears (3-5) face Woodlake (6-9-2) on the road at 6 p.m. today.
Lemoore vs. Mt. Whitney
HANFORD — The Lemoore boys soccer team had a tough 3-2 extra time loss on the road against Mt. Whitney on Friday.
The West Yosemite League loss was the first of the year for the Tigers and coach Eric Bow was not happy with the referees afterwards.
“It was the worst officiated game I’ve seen in 40 years,” Bow said. “The ref called two penalty kicks on us in the second half, both of which were not fouls.”
Those two penalty kicks were preceded by a penalty on Lemoore forward Joshua Roa in the box that was called by the assistant referee but ignored by the referee in the middle of the field.
Had Roa converted what was a penalty kick, Lemoore would have led 3-0. Instead, they lost at the end of extra time.
“Our defense would’ve had another clean sheet if not for the referee,” Bow said.
The Tigers will get a chance to wash away the bad loss with a road match against Golden West (5-3-2, 2-0 WYL) on Thursday and a home match against Redwood (9-4-2, 3-0 WYL) on Friday.
Lemoore’s game against El Diamante on Tuesday was cancelled because of bad field conditions and will be rescheduled for a later date.
Hanford West vs. Golden West
HANFORD — The Hanford West girls basketball team lost to Golden West 54-32 on Friday.
Madison Sousa led the team with eight points, Leah Natera and Nayleen Galaviz each scored five points.
The Huskies (3-15, 0-3 WYL) trailed 25-17 at halftime, but were put away in the third quarter when they were outscored 16-5.
Sousa and Chelene Howard, the team’s two best players, each fouled out of the game and as a whole struggled with foul trouble.
Hanford West has a home game on Friday and will face Mt. Whitney (3-8, 0-2 WYL) at 7:30 p.m.