Ss. Pius and Matthias Academy hosted the CYO 2015 girls soccer finals April 29, which featured defending champion American Martyrs (Manhattan Beach) vs. Visitation (Los Angeles).
The rematch was highly anticipated, as these teams are familiar with one another, both hailing from the tough Southbay Conference.
The first half was a feeling out process as the teams exchanged possessions and made attempts to attack the others defenses. But at the sound of the whistle, neither team scored heading into halftime.
As the second half got underway, Visitation earned the first tally, scoring an arcing corner kick to take a 1-0 lead at the midway point of the second half.
AMS began a furious offensive attack to equalize, yet Visitation would not have it. As time was winding down, AMS flooded the box for a corner kick attempt, knocking it in for a goal and the tie. The referees blew the whistle prior to the kick off and the game was sent to penalty kicks.
Each team was given five alternating attempts to score from the penalty line. Shots were made and shots were blocked, and in the end, AMS came out on top to defend their title and claim the 2015 CYO Girls Soccer Championship.
“This was a spirited game with two of the best soccer teams in CYO,” said director James McGoldrick. “All these teams should be proud of their accomplishments this season.”
In the third place game, St. James (Torrance), faced off against St. Lawrence Martyr (Redondo Beach). Here again players and coaches were well acquainted due to their proximity and club team play. It was a tight battle throughout, with all the scoring taking place in the second half and a tie score at the end of regulation forcing penalty kicks. The game extended into sudden death, and St. James came away with the extra tally to claim third place in CYO.