Girls soccer matches to watch
Here are a few girls soccer matches of note going on this week around the East Valley.
All records are unofficial and as of Monday afternoon Dec. 10. All matches are 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted.
Pinnacle at Xavier: As it has been the past several years, this is one epic matchup (even if it’s only regular season). Pinnacle has an offense that can rival anyone in the state, led by Jorian Baucom, as dangerous an offensive player as anyone in the state. Xavier was held in check by Catalina Foothills (a Div. II title contender), 2-1, in the Horizon Tournament of Champions last week. Pinnacle will be playing three matches in five days. These kids know each other very well.
Salpointe at Xavier: No rest for the Gators. Barb Chura’s bunch must turn around and face one of Tucson’s best schools (albeit at home). Salpointe (4-1-1) doesn’t otherwise see a lot of competition on par with Xavier (not that there are many teams on par with the Gators).
Red Mountain at Highland: The Lions are off to a nice start with wins against Maryvale, Mountain View and Basha, while a 1-0 loss to Desert Vista last week is hardly a bad thing. It does, however, set up an interesting week against the Jackrabbite, the Hawks and Mountain View (again). Andy Barber’s team will have a huge defensive task ahead of them with the high-powered Hawks, who lost in the Tempe Diablo tournament championship match to Desert Vista. That match shouldn’t sway much confidence out of John Berzins’ team.
Notre Dame at Desert Vista: Div. I elite vs. Div. II elite. Both teams are loaded with talent, but the question will be whether Notre Dame can handle Desert Vista’s attack, or will the Thunder wear down Gary Gregory’s Saints. It’ll be a great test for Notre Dame which has Div. II championship aspirations again. It also sets D.V. up for another big match next week against Mountain Pointe.
Basha at Hamilton: The first matchup from Nov. 30 ended in a 0-0 tie, but the Bears went through a rough stretch against Red Mountain and Desert Vista before beating Mesquite. The brutal stretch for the Bears resumes this week against Highland (Tuesday) and then this match. The Huskies are coming off an impressive showing in the Tempe Diablo tournament with a second-place finish, and have a chance to make a move in power rankings for the rest of December before early January’s schedule rears its ugly head.