Livingston high goalie Marco Sobrevilla thought it was all ball. Wolves coach Arturo Pulido couldn’t believe the call.
A controversial call in the final seconds of overtime awarded Galt junior Gilberto Lopez with a penalty kick when a Livingston defender was called for a foul in the penalty box.
Lopez delivered on the ensuing penalty kick as Sobrevilla drove to the right and Lopez booted the ball into the left corner of the net.
A few seconds later, the final whistle sounded and Galt was celebrating a 3-2 overtime win in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV championship game at Elk Grove High.
Just seconds away from the match going to penalty kicks, the Wolves (16-3-6) felt robbed.
“It’s pretty tough,” said Sobrevilla, who had a brilliant game in goal for Livingston. “I don’t think that was a penalty kick. The ref saw something different. I thought it was all ball.
“Our team gave it our all. I don’t know how you make that call in the final seconds.”
Pulido had to be pulled away from the officials after the match.
“How can someone make a call like that when they weren’t sure in the first place?” Pulido asked. “You make a decision that takes an opportunity away from our kids. Galt is a very good team. I want to say that. But it sucks our game was decided on a play he wasn’t sure about.”
The Wolves had fought back to play the undefeated top seed to an even 2-2 draw through regulation.
Adrian Copado gave Galt (26-0-1) a 1-0 lead just 3 minutes into the match with a goal.
Livingston’s Francisco Lopez answered shortly after to tie the game at 1-1.
Lopez answered with the first of his two goals midway through the first half to give the Warriors a 2-1 lead.
Jose Balderos tied the game again at 2-2 in the 55th minute with a header.
“I’m very proud of my team,” Sobrevilla said. “We worked all year long to get here. Getting here was something we all wanted.”
Sobrevilla liked his team’s chances if they had the opportunity to go to penalty kicks.
So did Pulido.
“If we lose in PKs, that’s fair,” Pulido said. “I can accept that. This wasn’t fair.”
Antelope 4, Pacheco 1 in Elk Grove – Ben Kikanovic scored three goals as the Titans (17-5-1) handed the Panthers their first loss of the season in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III championship game at Cosumnes Oaks High.
Antelope took advantage of a Pacheco team that wasn’t at its best on the big stage.
“Today we didn’t play like ourselves,” said Panthers co-coach Mike Perkins. “Credit Antelope. They took advantage of it. We created a lot of our own issues.”
Pablo Ortiz scored Pacheco’s lone goal late in the second half, but by that time the Panthers trailed 3-1.
Kikanovic was a thorn in the Panthers side all game, before was ejected from the game after his third goal. Kikanovic received a second yellow card for unsportsmanlike conduct
“If you give a good player the ball in dangerous positions he’s going to take advantage of it more times than not,” Perkins said. “We let him get the ball in dangerous positions too many times.”
There were a flurry of yellow cards toward the end of the match as the action got chippy between both teams.
Pacheco (14-1-6) will have to wait to see if it will receive an at-large berth in the NorCal Playoffs.
Woodland 1, Central Valley 0 in Elk Grove – The Wolves won their fourth consecutive Sac-Joaquin Championship as they made a first-half goal stand up for the victory.
Jessica Salas headed in a pass across the front of the cage by Ari Coronado in the 25th minute to give Woodland (19-1-5) a 1-0 lead.
The Hawks (21-2-2) struggled playing against the wind in the first half. Central Valley had more opportunities to score in the second half, but failed to put the ball in the net.
“We played pretty bad in the first half,” said Central Valley coach Miguel Larranaga. “This was not the best team we’ve played this season. I’m surprised we lost. Unfortunately, we didn’t put it in.”
The Hawks have had an impressive three-year run, compiling a 60-6-4 record the past three seasons.
Central Valley now must hope for an at-large berth into NorCal Playoffs.