Julio Soto was the star of the Cougars’ show Friday, scoring four goals in the victory that helped the SSHS squad improve to 8-3 in conference clashes.
“We played well to feet,” Spanish Springs coach Rob Moreland said. “We talked and we passed better, but Douglas didn’t have much pressure. Once we got them down, we started possessing it and it was all over.”
The first 20-plus minutes were lacking in offense, but from there, the Cougars got rolling. Soto broke the scoreless tie when he scored in the 24th minute thanks to an assist from Rudy Espinoza.
Five minutes later, Spanish Springs upped its edge to 2-0 on another Soto goal. He buried a shot in the top corner of the net from 30 yards out after Spanish Springs played keep-away from Douglas defenders for two minutes beyond the top of the DHS defensive box.
The Cougars weren’t done and neither was Soto. He tallied an unassisted goal at the 35-minute mark, posting a hat trick before the intermission.
“Julio played well,” Moreland said. “He got a yellow card four minutes into the match so I made him sit down for a few minutes. I put him back in and once he decided to shut up and play, he was very good. He got better with his first touch and put a lot of pressure on them. He composed himself well.”
Jonathon Cruz-Garcia put up the final goal of the first half for Spanish Springs. He scored in the 38th minute when Irvin Somera provided an assist.
Soto found the net for the last time Friday with a goal in the 48th minute. In the 51st minute, Reagan Chipman scored for Spanish Springs, capping the local club’s scoring. Both goals were unassisted.
Spanish Springs plays at McQueen Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. The match against the Lancers starts a tough string of league meetings for the Cougars. They will face stiff challenges from Carson, North Valleys and Reno after playing at McQueen.
“The tough part of the schedule is coming back around,” Moreland said. “It will be good for us, a good test period to see if we’ve been improving.”