JENNIFER FIERRO • PICAYUNE STAFF
ELGIN — It’s been quite a week for the Marble Falls High School boys soccer team.
After losing four consecutive bi-district games, the Mustangs (14-8-3 overall, 4-4-2 district) have now won two postseason contests in a row.
Marble Falls defeated Elgin 2-1 on March 27 in its own Wildcat Stadium in the area round of the Class 4A playoffs.
“We’re seeing boys turn into young men,” Mustangs head coach Rick Hoover said. “This process is quite humbling. I was hoping they would start peaking.”
Both goals in the March 27 game were by junior midfielder Erik Salgado. He scored the only goal in a 1-0 win against Austin McCallum on March 24.
The first goal against Elgin came five minutes into the contest on a free kick. Senior midfielder Asir Riojas kicked the ball to Salgado, who whipped the ball into the left corner, just beyond the outstretched arms of the Wildcat goalie.
Salgado kept his position, even after being pushed from behind.
“The ball hit my calf to stay straight, and I hit it with my right foot,” he said.
The second goal came on a penalty kick about 90 seconds into the second half when senior defender Chance Daniels was fouled in the penalty box from about 10 yards out. Again, Salgado found the upper-left corner for a 2-0 Marble Falls advantage.
“The penalty kick was easy,” he said. “I’m an expert on penalty kicks. If you miss, that’s what I hate. I practice them, so I know I can make them.”
Elgin’s only goal came on header off a corner kick with 11:48 left in the contest.
“I knew they were going to score before the game ended,” Hoover said. “I came into this game expecting them to score, so we had to score.”
ON OFFENSE: goals – Erik Salgado 2; Aassists – Asir Riojas, Chance Daniels
QUOTABLE: “It’s about playoff soccer, it’s so intense. (Elgin is) a good team. I knew we were in for a battle. We played really, really good, but we had great opportunities (we didn’t finish). That’s what we have to fix to go to the next level,” Marble Falls head coach Rick Hoover said.
RECORDS: Marble Falls is 14-8-3 overall and 4-4-2 in District 51-4A.
UP NEXT: 6 p.m. April 3, Marble Falls vs. Leander Rouse at Mustang Stadium, 2101 Mustang Drive in Marble Falls