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March 26, 2014

HORNETS SOCCER — Huntsville loses in bi-district playoff games

HUNTSVILLE — The feeling was all too familiar.

On a chilly March night, the district champion Hornets kicked off the boys Class 4A state soccer playoffs only to be upset in the opening round.

An early exit happened to the Huntsville boys for a second consecutive year on Tuesday night when the Hornets were knocked off by Tomball 2-0 in the bi-district round of the playoffs at Huntsville High School to complete a sour playoff doubleheader as the Lady Hornets were also bounced from the playoffs with a 3-0 loss to Tomball Memorial.

Last spring, the Huntsville boys were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by Magnolia following the Lady Hornets’ defeat to the Magnolia girls.

With the loss, both the Huntsville boys and girls were eliminated from the state soccer playoffs.

“I thank God first of all for the victories and the district championship that we had,” said Hornets senior Diego Ruiz.

“It didn’t go our way. We were dreaming about winning this first-round playoff game, but I guess it wasn’t our time. We didn’t accomplish what we wanted. It’s tough. I’m proud of our team.”

In the 15th minute, the Cougars of Tomball capitalized on a Huntsville defensive mistake.

A pair of Hornets interior defenders had some miscommunication issues in the middle of the field and both kicked the ball at the same time. The ball remained in the defensive zone and Tomball sophomore Tony Sanchez got his footing and buried the ball in the back of the net.

Just before halftime, the Cougars, fourth-place finisher out of District 40-4A, added to their lead.

Speedy forward Arodi Hernandez sprinted past the Huntsville defense and buried the ball just inside of the left goalpost with 1:38 to go before the break.

“It’s just frustrating to see that one area that could be an issue, we’ve been able to cover all year except for the last two games,” Huntsville coach Robert Taylor said.

“I don’t really look at it and say we did this wrong or that wrong. We didn’t play really well. When I look at this, I don’t think we had a bad game plan. We just didn’t execute very well.

“We didn’t do the things we normally do, but at the same time I don’t think we lacked effort. I thought they played hard and with the right attitude and the right demeanor. It just didn’t go our way.”

Tomball settled in defensively in the second half and kept the Hornets from getting any good shots on goal.

“We had some chances,” Ruiz said. “The other team took chances when we made mistakes. It was a tough game.”

For the second straight year, the Hornets were left hanging their heads after another tough first-round loss.

The Cougars advance to the area round and will face Lumberton later this week.

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