Week 9 of the National Premier Soccer League saw the Albion SC PROS take on City Of Angel FC in what was a tale of two halves.
An entertaining affair to say the least, the match saw an avalanche of goals and a hat trick per side. The lopsided encounter was witness to the PROS breaking out the attacking arsenal en route to a 7-3 win at Mission Bay High School.
Per usual, the PROS came out attacking from the initial whistle. The goal frenzy began quickly when David Luquen opened up the floodgates in the 10th minute. The build up itself was a visual representation of how the PROS work. A fast touch through the left flank saw Luquen easily beat his defender to find himself in the box, set the ball on his right foot and comfortably get a low touch to the keepers left side for the opening goal.
A short clearance from the City keeper gave way for Luan Oliveira to gain control outside the box and proceed to weave in between two defenders followed by the keeper inside the box and practically walk the ball into the back of the net in the 18th minute.
By this point of the match, PROS forwards Tre Hayes, Amani Walker and David Luquen were creating chances at will. Creating havoc for the City defense as soon as they flowed forward.
City had to revert to playing with practically every man in their own half yet it would not suffice.
Inside the 25th minute, Luquen was delivered a similar ball through the left. Outpacing his defender once again found him in the same spot to his match opener instead this time opting to take a slight delicate touch outside leaving the keeper beat to simply push the ball into the back of the net for his brace.
The rush of goals was in full affect. Five minutes later, Tre Hayes found the back of the net on a strange play inside the box as City players appealed for a foul. Hayes smoothly delivered a chip over the City keeper on a fast bouncing ball that found him by accident.
Hayes remained dominant upon his attacks into the City final third. In the 35th minute, Hayes slipped a superb ball to Amani Walker who took a low, hard driven shot to beat the City keeper once again.
The combination of Hayes and Walker proved to a grand partnership and began to fully give fruition when they linked up for Walkers second in the 42nd minute.
If you are still keeping up with us, that is 6-0 at the half.
The second half saw an obvious change in the sides. Luckily for the PROS, that meant being able to sub players and get some rest for their upcoming US Open Cup opener versus neighbors, Chula Vista FC.
PROS coach Ziggy Korytoski was able to gain a comfortable lead in the first half that allowed for these needed substitutions. Rest for almost every line of the PROS was taking place including in the back with goalkeeper Jean Antoine coming off for Kyle Jackson.
With so much change, the balance the PROS had found began to succumb to pressure from the City attackers. The 54th minute came along with the first of three strikes by City attacker Byron Rivera with shot from 20 yards out beating PROS keeper Jackson.
Unfortunately for City, the PROS responded almost immediately when Sean Callahan found Amani Walker with an exquisite touch over the City last line. Walker took a slight touch to control the ball and found the net for his third of the night.
The match then took a step back as the PROS were comfortably ahead and City seemingly uninterested in wanting to concede anymore. The mid became a bit of stop and go territory with both sides giving and receiving small fouls to cut any sort of advances.
A bright spot for the future of City Of Angels FC was on display in two more moments, one of complete and utter brilliance, from their 9, Byron Rivera.
Rivera found his second of the match in 69th as he made a bit of room in the PROS box and was able to slip one past Jackson.
Rivera completed his hat trick in the 80th minute with a special bit of magic delivering a classic chilena just inside the PROS box, which brought a temporary delight to a side that has had a rough introduction into the Southwest Conference.
The San Diego skies that rest upon Pacific Beach were dark and drizzly, as the PROS brilliant run of play began to come out, the clouds parted and the sun shined down on Buccaneer Stadium. Albion has been consistent in recent weeks in their run of play. Korytoski has set in place a standard and that has been met in last matches on the pitch.
The team looks comfortable and loose on the attacking end. The partnership between Hayes and Walker is providing goals. Luquen has been a menace for right backs. The mid is completely anchored with Felipe Liborio sitting back recovering balls and flowing forward to Luan Oliveira being the funnel to the attack. The defense, led by Kuba Waligorski, is still one of the top in the league. The theme to carry on for now is simple, continuity.
“We played an incredibly exciting first half” said Korytoski.
And it was. Game management was key, as it did get away from them a bit in the second half by conceding three, the first half was nearly perfect.
The attention now turns to the Open Cup.
“We’re excited. We know it’s a big moment for the club and for the city of San Diego” said Korytoski.
Very little time distances this convincing win and the fist match in the cup run.
Albion will be hosting its neighbors from the South this Wednesday in Pacific Beach.