If there was a time to play your best soccer of the season, the playoffs are the perfect opportunity.
For members Of the the Pitman boys soccer team, they have done exactly that as they began the 2018-19 CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division I playoffs with a 6-0 win over Lincoln on Tuesday at the Turlock Soccer Complex. Pitman will host the winner of Oak Ridge/Sheldon on Thursday.
The win was the Pride’s eighth in a row, which includes a 3-2 win over previous unbeaten Turlock on Feb. 6.
“We have a lot of confidence right now,” Pride coach Brian Hofsteen said. “We are finishing the ball really well. It (Tuesday) was a good game to start off the playoffs.”
Hofsteen said the team has been even more focused since the win over the Bulldogs. The second-year head coach said he sees this team advancing to the championship.
In the first step to a potential finals appearance, the No. 2 seed Pride (18-2) completely outmatched the Trojans.
Junior Felipe Lopez had two goals and three assists, including a pass to Jared Solario which the junior finished for the first goal of the game in the 13th minute. Lopez’s goals came in the second half, a strike from 14 yards to the left side in the net in the 48th minute and the other in the 70th.
“He’s playing at the top of his game right now,” Hofsteen said.
Lopez said the win over Turlock last week helped the team’s confidence grow even more.
The playoff win was the first by the Pride since 2015, when they advanced to the Div. II semifinals.
Turlock 5, Chavez 1: Junior Luke Redman had four goals for the Bulldogs (20-1-3).
Central Valley 3, Stagg 1: Three different Hawks (17-4-3) scored in the victory.
Oakmont 4, Johansen 2: It was tied at two at half but the Vikings (15-2-4) saw their season end in the Div. II playoffs.
Ceres 2, Oakdale 0: The Bulldogs (18-1-4) beat the Mustangs (6-9-2) in the first round of the Div. III playoffs.
Sierra 2, Beyer 1: The Patriots (11-9-1) scored in the 76th minute but couldn’t add another goal in the final four minutes.
Jesuit 2, Gregori 0: The Jaguars (12-8-2) ended their season with a loss to the Marauders (20-2-3).
Hilmar 6, Waterford 1: The Yellowjackets (15-6-2) won a playoff game for the first time in three years. They won the Div. VI title that year.
Modesto boys hoops beats Edison: Needing an extra frame, Modesto (15-13) beat Edison, 76-72 in overtime in a Div. I playoff game on Monday. The Panthers last playoff win was in 2017 when they beat Edison as well.
Modesto will host top seed Sheldon (18-10) on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
The Panthers, the No. 17 seed, will host the Huskies due to sanctions because Sheldon left the court and did not stay for the awards ceremony after losing to Modesto Christian in the section title game last year.