PASADENA — Both the Burbank High and Pasadena girls' soccer teams were trying to hold their respective squads together when the met Monday in a Pacific League match.
Both Bulldogs teams have had to shuffle around their lineups because of a rash of injuries and illness that have affected players. Burbank was also missing a key player who received a red card Friday against rival Burroughs.
Despite the struggles, it was Burbank that was able to dominate a large portion of the contest, controlling the tempo and getting the majority of the scoring chances. However, Pasadena was able to come on late in the match and scored a goal in the final minute to salvage a 1-0 victory at home.
In a scoreless contest with time running out, senior forward Amanda Speks looked to put Pasadena in front in the 78th minute. After taking the ball down the right side and getting a good look at the goal, Speaks couldn't finish the run.
But she would get another chance a minute later.
With just seconds left, Speks again got the ball on the right side. But this time she drilled a hard shot down low that the Burbank goalkeeper couldn't get a hand on.
"I was pretty frustrated when I missed that first one," Speks said. "I just wanted another chance. ...When I scored I had no idea it was the last minute. I was just happy I was able to get it."
The win keeps Pasadena (10-3-2, 5-1-1 in league) tied with Crescenta Valley (5-1-1 in league) for second place in the Pacific League. The Falcons notched a 4-0 win Monday against Glendale.
The final result proved frustrating for Burbank (7-8-1, 3-4), not only because the Bulldogs dictated play through the much of the match and had a wealth of chances, but it also diminishes the team's chances to qualify for the playoffs.
"We had our share of opportunities and we just couldn't finish," Burbank Coach Eric Montoya said. "We totally outplayed them from the beginning to the end. Their team was cheering at the end with their goal because they got the luckiest break."
Pasadena didn't even have a legitimate scoring chance in the second half until the 71st minute, as the Burbank defense held it in check for the first 30 minutes of the stanza.
However, the team did receive a fine effort from junior goalkeeper Venice Santos, who made 10 saves.
Burbank hit posts twice, had a breakaway and couldn't score and delivered a corner kick that dropped at the feet of a host of players, but none of them could get a shot off.
"Because of the missing players we had some players playing out of position," Pasadena Coach Kamiko Johnson said. "When people are playing out of position they tend to play more defensively and not attack because they're not that comfortable.
"But we definitely started playing in the last six minutes."