GLENDALE — Looking to regain the form that had seen it ascend to the top of the CIF Southern Section Division III rankings earlier this season before losing two of its last three games, Crescenta Valley High’s boys’ soccer team was first given a wake-up call by Hoover.
Just a minute in, Hoover senior Artin Almary dropped a shot off the crossbar that bounced down and just missed the goal line.
“It was a wake-up call to say they’re there and they’re a team that’s capable of scoring,” Falcons junior Kevin Ginosian said. “After that, we stepped up.”
Ginosian had a pair of goals, as did Tony Royer on Tuesday, propelling Crescenta Valley to an emphatic 6-1 Pacific League win over host Hoover.
“Hopefully something like that wakes up a team,” said Falcons Coach Grant Clark, whose team improved to 15-3-2 and 4-2 in league, as CV trails first-place Burroughs and Pasadena, the teams that dealt the Falcons losses last week. “We rebounded well and it’s nice to get a lead and go out and work on things and I thought we definitely did that.”
One aspect lacking in the Falcons’ losses was the ability to cash in on its opportunities with set pieces. That changed on Tuesday.
“We definitely worked on set pieces,” Ginosian said. “We try to make the most of those cause they’re good opportunities and we’ve been passing up on them lately.”
A Justin Wright corner kick ran across the goal mouth to Ginosian, who promptly one-timed a shot that caromed in off a Hoover defender at the far post for a 1-0 lead in the fourth minute.
Ginosian headed in a deep throw-in from junior Shyan Chachi in the 19th minute before another Wright corner kick in the 26th minute was headed in by senior Daniel Eng.
“Every game it seems like we have the same problems; we always give up goals on set pieces,” said Hoover Coach Basile Pagourtzis, whose team fell to 1-5 in league play and is tied for seventh place. “We gave up four in the first half. It’s hard to come back from that.”
Just a minute after Ginosian’s second goal, Crescenta Valley was called for a hand ball in the goal box. Aldary took the subsequent penalty kick and fired low, but his shot was saved by Chris Mardiroussian, who had four saves on the day. Mardiroussian couldn’t cradle the hard shot, though, and Aldary followed through and tapped in a goal.
Six minutes later, Eng scored and the onslaught was back on.
Crescenta Valley held a 4-1 halftime lead, as Royer drilled a free kick inside the near post from the 18-yard line — one of three free kicks the Falcons, who are No. 8 in the division now, would take from there.
“I don’t think we had a good game,” Pagourtzis said. “Mentally and physically, I think we got beat by a better team.”
The Falcons bombarded the Hoover net with 28 shots (16 in the first half), while Hoover countered with eight.
Though the score wasn’t indicative of it, Hoover goalie Emile Ohanyan turned in a solid effort, making 10 saves.
Crescenta Valley closed out its scoring with another Royer blast in the 65th minute and a Jason Winicki score off a Tyler Hovsepian cross in the 78th minute.
“We still have a long way to go,” Clark said. “I feel like if we come out and play our good style of play, where we move the ball and pass to everyone, we’re real tough.
“Today was nice to see 100-plus passes connected by us in the first half.”