The swirling winds in Tracy weren’t enough of an equalizer for host Kimball.
Manteca High battled through the gusts, a game effort from the Jaguars and a limited roster in a 3-1 victory that puts the Buffaloes in a four-way tie for second place in the wildly-competitive Valley Oak League.
“(Kimball) was able to create a few good opportunities, but we were able to possess the ball more,” Manteca coach Justin Coenenberg said. “We had two great looks and their goalie made some really nice saves, but overall that wind made it a sloppy game on both sides.”
Jason Maravilla pushed Manteca (2-1, 10-1-1) ahead in the fourth minute, beating the Kimball keeper after controlling Carlos Belmonte’s cross into the penalty area. The goal came at a cost, however, as Maravilla came up hobbled on the play. He did not play the remainder of the match.
“We already have some guys banged up right now,” said Coenenberg, saying Maravilla is day-to-day with a leg injury. One starter was out sick, and another missed the first half for missing practice.
Marcus Montano gave the Buffaloes some needed breathing room with unassisted goals in the 61st and 70th minutes. Noah Aini kept the Jaguars in it with a score in the 63rd minute.
Manteca held an 18-10 shot advantage, and Abdiel Chaquito collected eight keeper saves.
East Union 2, Lathrop 0
A touch of brilliance from Rigo Jauregui in the 25th minute sent East Union racing toward its second Valley Oak League victory.
Jauregui stole the ball 25 yards off frame, dribbled past two Lathrop defenders and then slotted his shot past the goalie to make it 1-0.
The insurance score came 40 minutes later. Mario Zuniga finished a corner kick in the 65th minute to complete the scoring for East Union, now 2-1-0 in VOL play.
The corner kick was whipped into the box by Jesal Castellanos, finding Zuniga at the top of the 6-yard box.
Abel Lopez earned the clean sheet with four saves.
The Spartans (0-3, 6-6) have lost four straight and five of their last six heading into a pivotal showdown with upstart Weston Ranch (2-1, 10-2-1) on Thursday.
Sierra 2, Oakdale 2
The Timberwolves (1-1-1, 5-4-2) picked up a big point against Oakdale (2-0-1, 7-3-4) while keeping the VOL’s first-place squad within range of the rest of the pack.
All four goals were netted in the opening half at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium. Oakdale struck first with a penalty kick in the opening minutes. Sierra answered with Anis Guedoir’s head shot off a corner-kick cross. Jesus Coronado later volleyed in his attempt off a feed from Juan Acosta.
Sierra’s frosh-soph team won 1-0, with Eriq Kurys providing the deciding goal.
Sonora 1, Weston Ranch 0
A fluke goal led to just the second loss of the season for Weston Ranch (2-1, 10-2-1). The Cougars were down a man after a player was booked with a red card in the 81st minute, but they were still in control defensively.
The decisive moment came in the final minute, when Sonora’s standout goalkeeper, Andrew Klatt fired a shot from around 45 yards out. The ball skipped high off the turf and over the Weston Ranch keeper before settling into the net.