Will Dunaway scored two goals, including the game-winner in the 73rd minute to lift the Santa Barbara High boys’ soccer team to a 2-1 victory over Dos Pueblos on Saturday afternoon.
The Dons got on the board in the second minute of action when Dunaway collected the ball in the box off a failed clearance, battled for position, and found the back of the net off a deflection.
The opening goal was a big boost for Santa Barbara in a high-intensity rivalry match.
“In a rivalry game like this against San Marcos or DP, it settles the nerves a little bit,” said Santa Barbara coach Ricardo Alcaraz. “At the end of the day, we made one more play than them to win the game. It could have gone either way.”
Trailing 1-0 in first-half stoppage time, Dos Pueblos got a much-needed equalizer when Griffin Silver collected a loose ball and sent a right-footed shot toward the goal. A slight deflection put the Santa Barbara goalkeeper in bad position, and the Chargers evened the score 1-1 going into the second half.
“We’ll try to put this one to bed a little bit because we’ve got a quick turnaround and we get them again on Tuesday,” said Dos Pueblos coach Matt York. “It’s quite the strange year in league with back-to-back against a rival, but we also get the chance to fix some things and hopefully get a better result next time.”
In the second half, the two teams went back and forth but failed to create many quality scoring chances.
Max Early and Joshua Tahuite were stalwarts for Dos Pueblos, plugging holes and winning balls as the Chargers controlled possession for much of the second half.
Dos Pueblos had a throw in near midfield when Santa Barbara sprung the decisive counterattack. Cason Goodman came away with the ball off the Chargers’ throw in and found Dunaway with a through ball that led him into the open field for a one-on-one opportunity with the Dos Pueblos goalkeeper Diego Garcia.
Dunaway calmly finished with a left-footed shot to the right of Garcia to put the Dons ahead.
“In my mind I was just saying, ‘I’ve got to put this away to win the game,’” Dunaway said. “I was kind of reading where his body weight was shifting, and it was going to the left, so I put it to his right.”
Santa Barbara (9-5-1 overall, 3-1 Channel League) and Dos Pueblos (10-6-3 overall, 2-2 Channel League) will match up again on Tuesday.