battles

Kaytlynn Staley of Liberty Ranch (7) battles Mariely Preciado of Galt for the ball in the teams’ game Jan. 14.

After scoring a goal in the 36th minute of the second half, the Galt Lady Warriors took the lead against cross-town rival Liberty Ranch and held onto it for a large portion of the rest of the soccer game.

The Lady Hawks scored with less than five minutes remaining, however, to tie the game at 3-3 and end the night with a tie.

The result seemed like a victory in a sense, however, for Galt, as it was the first time the Lady Warriors had earned a tie against Liberty Ranch since 2011, when the teams tied 0-0 on April 7.

“I think the girls, I’m sure, feel really good; they worked really hard and they prepared a lot for this so I hope they feel really good about themselves,” said Galt coach Courtney Carillo afterward.

Galt has also played league games against El Dorado and Bradshaw Christian. The Lady Warriors lost 5-2 to El Dorado and lost 6-1 to Bradshaw Christian Jan. 16.

Gaining experience during the preseason against teams in higher divisions, such as Sheldon and Monterey Trail, helped the Lady Warriors as they started league, Carillo said when asked about the team’s year so far.

“We played some really tough teams in the start of the season, pre-season-wise, so I think it’s really helped us prepare us for the league games we’re playing now.”

The Lady Warrior defense stopped multiple Liberty Ranch shots in the second half, and Liberty Ranch coach Rob Huarte acknowledged it after the game.

“Honestly, I thought we possessed 90 percent of the second half, which was very unfortunate that we weren’t able to get anything to get through. Their defensive line played very well, number nine and 12 I thought played solid in the middle, and their goalkeeper made some pretty good saves so, like I said, hats off to them to playing their butts off tonight,” Huarte said.

The Lady Hawks went on to shut out Union Mine 4-0 on Jan. 16 to end the week with a 1-1-1 Sierra Valley Conference record.

Galt had struggled prior to the Liberty Ranch game in terms of staying healthy, which has led to Carillo getting creative on the field. However, the tie with the Lady Hawks was a bright moment against a talented team.

“We’ve had quite a few injuries so that’s been a challenge, so just arranging the players on the field to where they are best suited for the team we’re playing and how they’re doing that day, and just getting to know the girls and getting them into the best positions the team can utilize them in,” Carillo said.

“[It was] a great result considering it’s since 2011,” Huarte said of the last time the teams tied. “I thought both teams worked really hard tonight. We’re ecstatic for that. The teams didn’t play their best I don’t think; there were a couple of non-components. We were scrambling a bit toward the end, trying to make something happen and, fortunately for us, we were able to get something to happen.”

The Lady Hawks travel to Rosemont Thursday for a 6 p.m. game while Galt hosts Union Mine Thursday at 6 p.m. as well.