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Mesa dominates

Mustangs jump out to early lead, taking their first bell game over rivals in nearly four years.

January 26, 2011|By Matt Szabo, matthew.szabo@latimes.com
(Scott Smeltzer…)

COSTA MESA — Peter Salas could feel his stomach rumbling as he stepped off the field at Jim Scott Stadium on Wednesday night.

The Costa Mesa High senior goalie and his teammates on defense had been promised In-N-Out Burger if they shut out Estancia in the first Battle for the Bell game.

The Mustangs did so until the very end, when the Eagles converted a penalty kick in stoppage time, merely a footnote in Costa Mesa's 4-1 victory.

Salas looked at Mesa assistant Coach Chris Sullivan after the match.

"That was my clean sheet," said Salas, who made nine saves. "I still deserve In-N-Out."

Sullivan said the boys will still get their reward. The Mustangs can rent out the burger joint or do whatever they want after beating their crosstown rival for the first time since Jan. 31, 2007.

It's only Mesa's second win over Estancia in the last 10 years in boys' soccer, and it further hurts the Eagles' chances for their fifth straight Orange Coast League title.

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"This is our first time winning since, like, a long time ago," said Mesa senior Dong-Gi Shin, who scored twice. "I've played since sophomore year, we've never beat them. We worked really hard to win this game. I just don't know what to say. I'm just so happy."

Shin and the Mustangs (7-7-2, 3-2 in league) stay in second place halfway through league play, only behind Godinez (5-0). Their play on the pitch said plenty after scoring twice in the first 12 minutes of the game.

Sophomore forward Cesar Pineda found the back of the net first in the 10th minute, beating a drawn-out goalie near the top of the box. A minute later, the Eagles' Oscar Barannon nearly had the equalizer before Salas leaped and deflected the ball off the bar.

Mesa junior Jorge Sanchez soon gained possession around 40 yards out, and knew what to do with it. He sprinted to the left side of the box with four players giving chase, before shooting it back cross-cage for a 2-0 Mustangs lead.

Sullivan, who saw Estancia's Carlos Arriaza hit the bar with a shot just two minutes in, knew the Mustangs were in good shape after surviving the early Estancia barrage.

"A lot of their outside shots were testing us," said Sullivan, who had head coaching duties after Mesa Coach Alex Cordoba received a red card in his team's previous game. "The boys made some big plays as far as hitting them on the counterattack when they weren't ready, especially that goal with Jorge. Jorge pretty much created that goal by himself."

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