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SOCCER: DEFENDING CHAMPS SHUTOUT ROYALS

Last year’s IIAAG Boy’s High School soccer champions lost eight starters to graduation last year, but it sure didn’t seem like it as the JFK Islanders defeated the visiting Notre Dame Royals 4-0 in their season opener Thursday evening.

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By Jose Terlaje

Last year’s IIAAG Boy’s High School soccer champions lost eight starters to graduation last year, but it sure didn’t seem like it as the JFK Islanders defeated the visiting Notre Dame Royals 4-0 in their season opener Thursday evening.

“We’re not there yet. It’s just our first game and there’s still so much we have to work on. Last year we lost eight seniors that were starters so we’re still trying to figure out how to fill in their shoes. No positions are finalized right now. We’re just looking to put the right pieces together as the season progressions so we can ultimately do well in the playoffs where it counts,” said JFK Head Coach Eladio Manansala after the win, when asked about the result of the game and how much his team has changed from last year.

The Islanders kicked-off the ball and started the match much slower than last year’s championship team but their control and passing were on point, making their way inside the Royals’ goalie box early.

The Islanders then scored in just the 4th minute after a number of failed clearances by the ND defense sent the ball straight to JFK’s Tyler Pangelinan who volleyed the ball to the back of the net, putting JFK up 1-0.

The Royals then attempted to establish some kind of offense but were unsuccessful as the Islanders constantly won the ball back in the midfield. JFK’s striker Jordan Jasmin was finally able to break away and had a wide open shot but it hit the inside post and came straight out.

The Islanders continued to apply the pressure on the ND defense and were successful as RJ Estrada sent a cross through the air to Jasmin who booted it right past the ND keeper to extend JFK’s lead 2-0 in the 21st minute.

Just three minutes later, Jasmin sped down the sideline past the ND defense and sent a low cross to Estrada who finished it with a laser shot to the back of the net, putting JFK up 3-0.

The Royals finally got a break as Daniel Lanquin was able to weave through the JFK defense and try to get something going. A free kick was given to ND who fooled the JFK defense with a fake kick by Lanquin that was eventually shot by Noah Camacho but the shot went straight to the keeper. Lanquin was running the midfield and sending good passes throughout the match but his forwards were unable to catch up to them.

The Royals had another chance to score after the JFK keeper got a handball outside the goalie box but the shot by Lanquin was deflected and the half came to an end.

Wendy's Player of the Game, Jordan Jasmin of the Islanders.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Wendy’s Player of the Game, Jordan Jasmin of the Islanders. (photo by Daniel Paran)

The Islanders started the second half running on the momentum from their three goals scored in the first, constantly in attack mode as Jasmin attacked the goal multiple times early on. Looking to further extend their lead, the Islanders started barraging the ND keeper with shots from beyond the box but were unlucky.

The Royals had a chance to score as Lanquin sent a through ball down field to his winger but the wide open Camacho was unaware of the incoming pass and missed the opportunity as the ball rolled by him. Just moments later in the 61st minute JFK answered with an attack of their own as Kennedy Macatuno sent a long shot from beyond 35 yards straight to the ND keeper who appeared to have saved the ball but his foot was behind the goal line and the goal was counted, increasing the JFK lead to 4-0.

The Islanders then began to play a more controlled game, passing more into the spaces and maintaining control of the ball for a majority of the time left on board until the final whistle was blown.

PHOTO GALLERY BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

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ND Goalie Michael Merfalen makes a dive for the ball and keeps out the Islanders.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

ND Goalie Michael Merfalen makes a dive for the ball and keeps out the Islanders. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Davon Moss trips up Inochi Recella and brings the ball in for a shot.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Davon Moss trips up Inochi Recella and brings the ball in for a shot. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Samuel Untalan trying to make his way around Tyler Pangelinan and Inochi Recella's defense.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Samuel Untalan trying to make his way around Tyler Pangelinan and Inochi Recella’s defense. (photo by Daniel Paran)

The boys of JFK brace themselves for a penalty kick by Dean Diras.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

The boys of JFK brace themselves for a penalty kick by Dean Diras. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Takumi Ito charges past Royals Nate Astorga with ease and enters ND territory.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Takumi Ito charges past Royals Nate Astorga with ease and enters ND territory. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Inochi Recella puts a stop to ND's offense, sending the ball out to mid-field.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Inochi Recella puts a stop to ND’s offense, sending the ball out to mid-field. (photo by Daniel Paran)

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Sports legend Joe Taitano used to run to school at JFK from his Yigo home and back. He continued this routine up to 1979 when he’d run from home to GW gym and back to practice for the South Pacific Games with the national basketball team. Guam went on to win its second straight SPG gold medal.

 

 

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