Rocklin picks up tempo in second half to defeat Roseville 2-0
Using a somewhat surprising upbeat tempo in the first half, Roseville was able to hold the
Rocklin High girls soccer team to a scoreless tie for the first 40 minutes. However, the Thunder came out in the second half with greater determination and defeated the Tigers 2-0 on a damp, chilly Thursday evening.
Roseville came out strong and appeared to be playing with the upper hand. The Tigers kept the ball in Rocklin territory for most of the first half but couldn’t penetrate deep enough to score. But in the final 40 minutes of the Sierra Foothill League match, Rocklin changed all that.
“They came at us really hard. We were getting a lot of pressure and we weren’t able to handle the pressure real well,” said Thunder soccer head coach Paul Morrison as to his club’s strategy to play at a slower tempo. “We said forget about it, if they’re going to play us high pressure we’re going to play them high pressure. So, the second half we came out and didn’t give them an inch.”
It was almost as if the field at Rocklin Stadium favored north because that’s where the action stayed after the teams changed sides. The Thunder went on the offensive with Jessica Miller racing ahead of a defender to put a well-placed kick into the back of the goal at the 21-minute mark.
It would be enough to win the match, but it wouldn’t be the last score for the Thunder.
Michelle Tran then positioned herself perfectly in front of Roseville’s goal just four minutes later to take an assist from Isabella Castro and score the decisive and final goal.
“Once we set up a tempo the possession on our part just changed 180 degrees” Morrison said of the momentum swing favoring the girls in blue. “When you come out with a two-goal game you feel you really have a cushion. Most of the time out here, it’s a one-goal game and you never feel like you can relax. This league is tight.”
The Tigers threatened only a couple of times in the last stanza but Rocklin goalkeeper Jamie Goodwin and the Thunder defense were up to the task.
The win improved Rocklin to 3-0 in league and 4-2-1 overall. Last year, the Thunder entered SFL competition 9-2 only to finish 3-3-4 in league. Del Oro won the SFL title at 4-0-6.
“Last year, we were just a little too young. We only had two seniors that were starting,” Morrison said. “We were just young.”
SFL – Rocklin 3-0, Del Oro 2-1, Granite Bay 2-1, Roseville 1-2, Woodcreek 1-2, Nevada Union 0-3.
Schedule – April 11, Granite Bay, April 16, at Nevada Union.
ROCKLIN 2, ROSEVILLE 0
Tigers 0 0 – 0
Thunder 0 2 – 2