Moorpark College showed it was more than a one-man soccer team during the last 15 minutes of its 2-1 win over Irvine Valley on Saturday in a state junior college quarterfinal playoff match at Moorpark.
But Moorpark (17-1) will have to prove it for an entire match in the state semifinals next weekend at Chabot College in Hayward.
Billy Krantz scored his 19th and 20th goals of the season to lift Moorpark to the victory, but the halfback was issued a red card for spitting on an Irvine Valley player at the 75-minute mark, resulting in his suspension for the rest of the match.
Because of the red card, Krantz also will be suspended for Moorpark's semifinal match Saturday against Fresno City, Northern California's top-seeded team.
If Moorpark wins, Krantz, the team's scoring leader, will be able to return for the championship match against the East Los Angeles-West Valley winner.
"I was just frustrated," said Krantz, a sophomore from Newbury Park High. "We were flat-footed and we started playing the other team's game."
Moorpark outshot Irvine Valley, 19-9, but Mike Densmore gave Irvine Valley (18-2-4) a 1-0 lead in the 42nd minute after breaking free on the left wing for a 10-foot shot.
"We didn't play with intensity," Moorpark Coach Frank Parodi said. "We thought we were just going to roll over them until that first goal woke us up."
Krantz scored on a 15-foot penalty kick with a little less than a minute remaining in the first half to tie the score, 1-1, after Moorpark forward Richie Rungaitis had been tripped from behind by an Irvine Valley defender.
Ten minutes into the second half, Krantz knocked in a Jeff Spach shot that rebounded off the chest of Irvine Valley goalkeeper James Fucetola for the go-ahead score.
After Krantz's ejection, the Raiders played conservatively with at least six defenders behind midfield, but they needed three saves by goalie Mike Zemansky, who had nine in the match, to preserve the win.
How much of an effect will Krantz's absence have? "It's a pretty big loss," Rungaitis said. "We're just going to have to pick it up and play defense."
Parodi had similar sentiments.
"It's going to hurt us and we're going to be a notch down," Parodi said. "Fortunately, we play a team-structure offense that is not geared toward one individual.
"We have four or five good players to fill in, but he's a top quality player."