In the end, the inevitable far outweighed the improbable.
The Canyon High School girls’ soccer team, having lost its top two players to injury early in the game, lost, 2-0, to top-seeded Agoura in the Southern Section 3-A final Saturday at Gahr High School in Cerritos.
Canyon, the sixth-seeded team, had its biggest challenge of the season going into Saturday’s match. Agoura (26-0) had set a Southern Section record with 175 goals this season, and its defense had allowed only six goals.
So when Canyon goalkeeper Keri Erkenbrack went down in the game’s opening minute, Comanche fans had reason to worry. Erkenbrack, who was kicked in the head while trying to stop a shot, was taken to Pioneer Hospital in Artesia for X-rays and observation. A mild concussion was the preliminary diagnosis.
Less than 20 minutes later, Christa Ramirez, Canyon’s scoring leader, limped off the field with a sore left knee. Using a variety of taping techniques, Ramirez tried several times to play, but could muster little more than 50% of her usual firepower and didn’t take a shot in the match.
Ramirez, who along with Erkenbrack also starred on Canyon’s basketball team this season, admitted that playing both sports in one season might have led to the knee injury, one that she has yet to have checked by a physician.
“I guess I’m lucky it happened in the end of the season,” Ramirez, a senior, said. “I can’t be too disappointed. We’ve done everything we wanted to this year.”
Canyon, which had never advanced beyond the second round of the playoffs, played impressively despite its injuries, especially in the first half as it out shot Agoura, 7-4. With just seconds remaining in the half, Canyon’s Keri Springer took a straight shot from five yards out, but Agoura fullback Kelly MacDonald reached up with her hands and swatted the ball away. No hand ball was called.