Mustangs net nine on Grizzlies



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Mustangs sophomore Tate Deering chases a loose ball in Tuesday's match against Glenn. Deering scored his first goal of the season on a header and added a pair of assists.




By Nathan Hendrix

Sports Editor

Fans in attendance who were looking for a defensive, one-nil soccer game were disappointed on Tuesday night as the Marble Falls Mustangs opened the flood gates on district opponent Glenn in a 9-1 victory.

The Mustangs scored five goals in the first half and four goals in the second half in their highest scoring game of the season. Senior forward Isek Munoz registered a hat trick in the first 16 minutes of gameplay. Mustangs' head coach Rick Hoover said Munoz was in a groove from the opening kick-off.

“When you get [a player] that gets hot like that, they're hard to stop,” he said. “Their confidence goes through the roof, and it's amazing how much easier things can become when you have that momentum.”

Munoz scored his first goal in the ninth minute of the game and set the tone for the game. With 27:40 remaining in the first half, he stole the ball on a lazy play by the Grizzlies defenders and netted another. Three minutes later, he beat several Glenn defenders one-on-one and put another on the scoreboard; with 24:16 still left to play in the first half, the Mustangs led three-nil.

Munoz was subbed from the game after a collision with the Grizzlies goalkeeper on a breakaway that nearly resulted in Munoz's fourth goal. Sophomore Tate Deering played the rest of the game for Munoz. Deering did his best Munoz impression when he scored on a header off a corner kick from junior defender Oscar De La Hoya to increase the Marble Falls' lead to four goals.

“Tate is a great athlete,” Hoover said. “He's going to be great, but he needs to get caught up. He hasn't been playing soccer with us for the last three months like the rest of the players.”

After wins and losses, Hoover has continued to speak about effort and energy from the Mustangs. Senior Bernabe Torres displayed some of the effort Hoover is looking for with two minutes remaining in the half. The Mustangs sent a long ball down the field, and Torres outpaced three Grizzlies defenders to the ball and beat the goalkeeper wide to give the Mustangs a five-nil lead heading into halftime.

“Unfortunately for [Glenn], it was just one of those nights where everything went right for us,” Hoover said. “When we're playing well, our speed is tough to stop.”

In the second half, the Mustangs got to test out some of their bench depth. Senior goalkeeper David Moran entered the game for Michael Vazquez, and junior forward Bryan Arreguin saw extended playing time at forward. With 20 minutes remaining in the game, fewer than a handful of Mustangs' starters remained in the game.

Hoover said he's trying to get all players as much experience as possible before the postseason.

The Mustangs showed some goal-scoring versatility in the second half; junior Matias Olivas scored after a passing clinic from the Mustang offense; De La Hoya scored on a free kick after he drew a foul in traffic; and senior Jesus Mata scored off a pass from junior Alfonso Soto in a demonstration of how to execute a two-man game.

“I was pleased because Isek's goals tend to come from athleticism; Bernabe's goals tend to come from speed,” Hoover said. “We have a versatile attack, and that's what makes us dangerous.”

The Grizzlies scored a goal in the final five minutes, but Hoover said he isn't worried about the mistake the Mustangs' defense made to allow it.

Only three games remain in the regular season as the Mustangs continue their push towards the postseason. The Mustangs moved into second place in District 17-5A after first place Pflugerville beat Cedar Park on Tuesday.

The Timberwolves beat the Mustangs on Feb. 15, but the Mustangs have a chance to even the season series on March 12 at home. On Friday, the Mustangs travel to Pflugerville to take on the Weiss Wolves. The Mustangs close their season against first-in-district and undefeated Pflugerville.

“You couldn't have drawn it up any more dramatic,” Hoover said. “Both teams are having one of their best years. That's exciting.”

Kick-off for Friday's game against the Wolves is scheduled for 7:15 p.m.

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