Spanish Springs topped Reed 3-1 the first time the two rivals played a month ago and beat Reed again, 2-1, on the road on a chilly Wednesday night.
Spanish Springs, the High Desert League champs, remained undefeated at 14-0-2 in its final league tuneup before a non-league contest with Sparks Friday, and the regional tournament next week. Reed, which finished the season 5-10-1, was left to play for pride after being eliminated from the playoffs in a loss at North Valleys last Wednesday.
“It came down for us playing for heart, us playing for pride,” Reed coach Joel Martinez said. “Obviously, we kept up with them for 73 minutes of the game.”
With the game tied 1-1 in the 73rd minute, Victor Garcia showed off his blazing speed to burn past the Reed defense. He found a wide open Chris Moreland who drilled home the game-winner from seven yards out.
Moreland is the son of Spanish Springs coach, Rob Moreland, and entered the game off the bench late in the second half.
“That’s pretty cool,” the Spanish Springs coach said. “You never know what is going to happen. You throw him out there and see what happens. He did a good job.”
Edwin Medina scored the Cougars’ first goal just three minutes into the match. The Reed defense was unable to clear the ball with its back against its own net and Medina capitalized.
Reed’s Roberto Jacuinde tied the match in the 55th minute after streaking down the middle of the field and slotting the ball inside the near post from 15 yards out.
Jacuinde had a chance to tie the match, much earlier, in the sixth minute. After Spanish Springs’ goalie Omar Trujillo was unable to clear the ball, Jacuinde corralled it at the top of the box with an open net but his shot rolled right of the net.
“We missed the one without a keeper at the beginning of the game but that’s just the way soccer is,” Martinez said.
The Raiders were without four starters who were ineligible after failing to make grades.
“It was good to comeback,” Moreland said. “I think it shows character. This field is hard to get your passing going, so it was tough on our guys but I’m glad they came back and got out of it.”
Moreland added his team is not playing its best soccer after the Fall Break but believes his team will regain crisp form before the regional tournament next week.
Spanish Springs hosts Sparks Friday, before the regional tournament, in an intriguing non-league matchup between arguably the two strongest schools in northern Nevada.
Reed put the 2013 season to bed with the loss.
“I think we did what we had to do we just didn’t capitalize on certain mistakes and they (opponents) did,” Martinez said. “At the end of the game, what matters is what’s on that scoreboard.”