Girls Soccer: CdM's big run ends

Sea Kings run out of magic against Foothill, as season ends in a rainy CIF quarterfinal match.

February 28, 2014|By Matt Szabo

TUSTIN — They came back to the place where it all started, the crazy four straight wins that propelled the Corona del Mar High girls' soccer team to its fourth straight Pacific Coast League title and the CIF Southern Section Division 1 quarterfinals.

Tustin High felt different than it did 17 days earlier, when CdM beat Beckman to start the run. On Friday night an umbrella was needed. The rain was on again, off again, and heavy at times.

The result also was different. It didn't go the Sea Kings' way. Foothill sophomore forward Sarah Moss scored in the 66th minute and the No. 3-seeded Knights hung on for a 1-0 quarterfinal victory, ending CdM's season.

The Sea Kings have advanced to the CIF quarterfinals six times in Coach Bryan Middleton's 12-year tenure, but never further. They were denied their first CIF semifinal appearance since 2001-02, in Division 4.

There wasn't a dry eye among the CdM players after the game. But what they might remember more is dancing to a country song at halftime. They huddled at the 50-yard line and danced to "Country Girl (Shake it for Me)" by Luke Bryan, umbrellas up, sharing a team bonding moment.


"We're just a fun team this year," senior forward Sabrina Roy said. "We all get along. It's not super-stressful ... I couldn't have asked for a better team. Our last three games were insane. I'm going to remember them forever. They were epic."

After beating Beckman, 2-1, when a Patriots penalty kick went over the cage, the Sea Kings rallied for three goals in the final 20 minutes to win at Northwood, 3-2, for the league title. In their first two playoff games, they beat Fountain Valley and Upland, each time in a shootout.

Friday's game looked like it might be heading for one too, although the Century League champion Knights (16-4-6) put a lot of pressure on CdM (13-6-4) to start the second half. The Sea Kings also did get chances, though. The best came in the 55th minute, when junior Birkley Sigband executed a give-and-go with freshman Leah Givant. But no one could score Sigband's cross from the left side of the box.

The Knights kept the pressure on. Nine minutes later junior center back Brianna Westrup was taken down just outside of the box. Her mother Anita, obviously concerned, came down into the front of the stands to check on her daughter.

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