Havasu to host playoff soccer doubleheader
For the first time in school history, the Lake Havasu boys and girls soccer teams will both be hosting playoff matches on Thursday, the teams finding out their postseason draw when 4A brackets were announced on Wednesday morning.
The girls, who won the West Valley region, earned the No. 16 seed and will be hosting No. 17 Mingus Union at 5 p.m., the first game in the doubleheader.
Havasu (11-3-1) enters the postseason with some of the most firepower in the state, including the conference’s leading scorer, sophomore Kendra Park, who has a 4A-best 44 goals and 91 points.
The Marauders (7-5-0) were one of six teams to make the tournament from the tough Grand Canyon region, and their season numbers show the difficulty of the schedule. Mingus won just two of its last six games in a schedule that overlaps quite a bit with the Knights.
The Marauders posted wins over Lee Williams and Peoria and lost to Mohave 4-2. Havasu won one of three games against Lee Williams this season and split with Mohave, beating Peoria in a rout.
After a finish to the season that didn’t match the torrid start, the Havasu boys thought they could be on the road to start the playoffs.
However, a late shift in the standings found the Knights with the No. 14 seed, hosting No. 19 Canyon Del Oro, from the Tucson suburb of Oro Valley, at 7 p.m. at Lee Barnes Stadium.
The Knights (12-3-2) have scored more goals than any team in 4A, but were docked by what the state considered the conference’s worst strength-of-schedule.
The Knights are lead by a balanced scoring attack that includes three of the top 10 point scorers in 4A (Randy Gallegos 51, Tristan Fowler 50, Johnathan Perez 41).
Canyon del Oro (7-7-3) is one of three teams to make the tournament from the Kino region, finishing behind top-eight qualifiers Salpointe Catholic and Catalina Foothills. In part because of the tough schedule the Dorado are winless in their last six matches, mustering two ties in the stretch.