A Win is a Win…Dons Varsity Soccer Goes to 13-0!

Acalanes 3, Clayton Valley 0

Halftime: 0-0. Scoring: Acalanes, L. Van Oss (M. Mirner) 58:00, Ben Croze (76:00), M. Butler 78:00. Saves Rogstad (Acalanes) 0, Clayton Valley 7.

On a calm and cool evening at Acalanes, Clayton Valley provided an interesting test for the Don’s.  Clayton played with a very well organized defense that played their back line high up close to the halfway line whenever possible, a different look than we’ve seen so far this season.  For 57 minutes it worked, keeping the Don’s off the score sheet until Luc Van Oss sent a looping header over Clayton’s goalie for the Don’s first score.

Luc Van Oss heading for goal...

Luc Van Oss heading for goal…

It looked like the game would end 1-0 until a fine 76 minute strike by Ben Croze, followed by Mitch Butler’s 78 minute tap in.

Stuart Lee fighting for the ball...

Stuart Lee fighting for the ball…

While a Don’s 3-0 victory sounds about right when considering how they hard worked, this score line actually does not reflect what happened on the night. From the first minute to the last, that high-up-the-park defense of Clayton Valley’s invited a barrage of shots and breakaways (leading to shots) that excited the home crowd like only a Don’s v Campo match can.  In total there was an astounding 23 Don’s shots on goal or at least intended for the goal.  While Clayton’s halfway line defense invited exciting breakaways, it also invited the offside rule, catching the Don’s off side no fewer than 15 times which further excited the home fans as it was apparent not all agreed with all 15 calls!

An 8-0 victory for the Don’s wouldn’t have looked out of place. Interestingly, Clayton Valley gave an insight into the many different ways to play defense.  The Don’s eventually overcame the condensed field of play created by that high defense by keeping their cool and shape.  That was a great lesson in patience, rather than becoming frustrated at not scoring for 57 minutes, the Don’s allowed time to run it’s course and as we all know, in time cream will rise to the top!

Next up, Acalanes at Campolindo!!!  This Friday, January 11 at 6:15 PM, see you there.  

Barry Allan Lee, Man on the Beat

Photos by David Lee