TALENT — When Maggie Carrillo is clicking, so are the Phoenix Pirates,
Carrillo scored one goal and had two assists as Phoenix rallied in the second half of its Skyline Conference girls soccer opener and registered a 4-2 victory against Klamath Union at Hagler-James Park Thursday.
Klamath Union (1-3, 0-1 Skyline) scored two goals on three shots in the first half, while the Pirates (2-1-1, 1-0) had eight chances on goal with nothing to show.
“We controlled the ball but couldn’t finish anything,” said Phoenix coach Stephanie Vandenbusch. “We were out-working them but their physicality got to us a little bit.”
Sandra Villa got the Pirates started early in the second half when she one-touched a cross from Carrillo into the Pelican net from the top of the 18. Then just minutes later, Jackeline Rodriguez scored unassisted to knot the score 2-all.
“That was a huge momentum switch for us,” said Vandenbusch. “We were playing with more speed and as a team. We were making good runs to the ball.”
About midway through the period, Carrillo went airborne near the goal to head in a pass from Lupita Alegria to put Phoenix ahead for good.
Mackenzie Christianson provided an insurance goal at about the 65-minute mark off a pass from Carrillo.
“(Carrillo) is a tenacious player,” said Vandenbusch. “She’s under 5 feet but plays like she’s 6-1. She’s the heart and soul of our team.”
SOUTH MEDFORD 0, SHELDON 0: At Eugene, South Medford had more possession but couldn’t penetrate the Sheldon defense in the Southwest Conference match.
The game turned into a battle in the midfield but neither team could generate offense.
South Medford stands 1-1-1 in SWC play and 2-1-2 overall while Sheldon is 0-2-1 in league and 0-4-3 on the season.
PHOENIX 2, KLAMATH UNION 0: At Klamath Falls, Bryson Flenner and Dan Martinez tallied first-half goals and the Skyline Conference game was called after the first half because the lights at Modoc Field could not be restored to working order.
When the lights failed with about eight minutes left in the opening period, the referees let the teams finish the half in fading daylight. When the problem could not be rectified the game was called and Phoenix (4-0, 1-0 Sky) was awarded the victory.
Winless Klamath Union (0-4, 0-1) packed the defensive end but Flenner bent a shot inside the far post from near the end line in the 23rd minute off a Randy Rodriguez pass to give Phoenix a 1-0 lead.
The Pirates, ranked No. 3 in the 4A coaches poll, took a 2-0 advantage five minutes before halftime when Miguel Conchas threaded a pass to sophomore Dan Martinez, who converted from close in.