By Chad Robert Snyder
Pilot staff writer
The varsity soccer Bruins took care of pressing business Tuesday night at home, dispensing of the North Bend Bulldogs in impressive fashion.
The 5-0 victory was exactly what Bruins' Head Coach Gabriel Anaya said he was looking for started quickly, played physical, and approached with a desire to win.
"The boys really wanted this game," he said. "Versus North Bend they always play hard, but this one was special."
It was indeed.
The Bruins, after taking the match, now own first place in the 4A Far West league. Prior to Tuesday's head-to-head matchup, the Bruins were tied with North Bend and possessed identical records. Now they stand alone at 9-1.
The Bruins executed the game plan better than Anaya could have hoped, he said.
They blazed out to an early lead, scoring twice in the first seven minutes of the match. Anthony Babb logged the first goal, assisted by Team Captain Linden Loren, and the second, roles reserved, outcome the same.
There did seem to be a bit of a lull for the team in the middle minutes of the first half, but consistent defensive line play kept the Bulldogs out of the net. The lull was short lived, however, and by the 29th minute Babb had added another goal and the Bruins seemed planted in front of the Bulldogs' net.
The second half was no letdown for the Bruins squad. As Anaya said, the tempo remained high the entire match.
"Their game really was 80 minutes, nonstop," he said.
The Bruins weren't just on defense either, attempting to protect a lead. If anything, they became more aggressive and were constantly threatening scores.
At 60 minutes Dylan Roberts scored on a quick, open-net header and 12 minutes later Babb scored his third of the game.
By the closing minutes, the game had morphed into a lopsided shoot-a-thon for the Bruins. The action also became increasingly physical and several players spent time on the ground. Ryan Holler had to be helped off the field near the end of the second period, but was walking under his own power by the end of the game.
Perhaps some credit should go to Anaya alone, who implemented a new formation just for this game. The idea, as Anaya said, was to put three forwards in immediately.
"I wanted to pressure them more," he said. " That way we could maybe have more chances to score early."
The Bruins certainly made the best of the situation.
Now alone atop the 4A Far West standing, the title is theirs to lose. Although perhaps their toughest game of the season is behind them, Anaya said he doesn't want the boys looking past anyone.
"There are still two games left; we can't relax," he said. "Those teams are third and fourth in the Far West, so they are going to play hard."
Next Tuesday the Bruins are off to Coquille and will attempt to put away the league title at 4:30 p.m.