The Estancia High School boys' soccer team rallied for two goals late in the game to break a scoreless deadlock with Troy and give the Eagles the Southern Section 2-A championship, 2-0, Saturday at Gahr High.
Estancia's Eric Kirsch kicked the ball past Troy goalkeeper Jeff Holcombe at 72:21 to give the Eagles the needed margin of victory.
"The ball bounced off of a Troy player, came to me and I hit it in the net," Kirsch explained. Moments earlier, Kirsch had gotten a formal caution from the referees for rough play, but he claimed that it didn't upset him.
"When that happens," he said, "you've just got to keep your cool and put the ball in the net."
Following Kirsch's goal, Troy changed its strategy from a defense-oriented one to something more offense-minded.
It was necessary if the Warriors hoped to catch up, but eventually they were caught with much of the team forward when Estancia fullback David McKiernan put in an insurance goal with three minutes to play.
Estancia Coach Eugenio Juarez said that he was worried that the same thing might happen to his team had Kirsch not scored when he did.
"Troy could've scored one on us and then just fallen back on defense," Juarez said. "But we were ready. Our game plan all along was to bring their defense out."
Estancia's finished 19-4-2, Troy 19-5-6.
In the girls' 3-A final:
La Quinta 1, Simi Valley 0--Michelle von Flotow scored the game's only goal with four minutes to play in the first half to give the Aztec girls' team the 3-A championship at Gahr High School.
The loss was the first of the year for Simi Valley (24-1-2), the top-seeded team in 3-A. La Quinta finished its season at 16-2-1.