The benches remain short with high school soccer teams still waiting to get players back from club.
With that in mind, Edison High boys’ soccer coach Charlie Breneman had to be pleased with what he saw from his team on Friday.
Going into a nonleague road match against Estancia, Breneman said that his bench consisted of one substitute at each level of the field. Despite that, the Chargers played with the type of energy and ball control that their coach was looking for.
The Chargers scored four goals in the first half, and Edison came away with a 5-0 victory on a wet night at Jim Scott Stadium.
“We were assertive moving the ball, and we shifted from side to side really quickly,” Breneman said. “Our first-half energy at the start of the game was really good. I’m happy that some guys got some goals today, and we played pretty well, so it’s a confidence-booster for some of us.”
Edison, which is ranked No. 4 in the CIF Southern Section Division 1 poll, improved to 2-0. The Chargers opened the season with a 2-1 win at home over Manhattan Beach Mira Costa on Wednesday.
Sophomore midfielder Grayson Marquez opened the scoring in the 15th minute, receiving a feed from Luke Slavik, who made his way deep into the attacking third up the right sideline.
An own goal against Estancia doubled the Chargers’ lead in the 23rd minute.
The Chargers dominated possession in the first half, sending 12 shots in the direction of the Estancia goal. Late in the first half, Edison earned a couple of set-piece opportunities and capitalized.
Senior right back Chandler Kane picked up a pair of assists on long throw-ins, which resulted in goals by forwards Riley Holmes and Dylan Zankich.
Unlike last season, Kane did not return to the bench immediately after taking his long throw-ins. He hopes to contribute in an expanded role this year.
“Last year, I was a throw-in specialist, but I picked the number 20 this year,” Kane said. “Different deal, different Chandler. I’m going to be starting, most likely. We’re just going to see how the season takes off from there.”
Kane and Holmes are both 6-foot-3, making them ideal targets for headers. They found each other for one that resulted in a goal in the 33rd minute.
“Going into the season, Charlie made that very specific that [headers] would be a good opportunity to [score],” Holmes said. “That is a big point of emphasis for us is those long throws.”
Senior midfielder Marcus Henze suffered a back injury in the 10th minute, and he was carted off the field. He stayed on the bench for the remainder of the game.
Breneman believes that Henze’s injury will not result in a long-term absence from the lineup.
“I’m not sure if it was a knee or something into the meaty part of his lower back,” Breneman said. “The trainer thinks that it was just a contusion, or an impact injury.”
The Chargers’ numbers grew thinner, but Armand Pigeon and Marquez stepped up in the midfield.
“I feel like I was ready to step up,” said Pigeon, who scored the Chargers’ fifth goal. “The experience of last year and carrying that on to this year has contributed to being more confident.
“Games where we’re not necessarily down, but missing numbers, I think that helped.”
Junior Bennett Flory and senior Dylan Delaney combined on the shutout for the Chargers, although the back line of Padric Pigeon, James Broussard, Nick Morrell and Kane allowed just one shot to be put on goal by the Eagles.
Brandon Lopez made seven saves for Estancia (1-4-1).
Estancia has allowed at least two goals in four consecutive games, but Eagles coach Robert Castellano has seen improvement despite the team’s struggles. He pointed to the efforts of Fernando Lopez, who has played at various positions this season.
“He’s always played defense, and I need him up higher in the field, so he’s adapting to the team,” Castellano said. “We have defenders ahead of him, and we’re putting him up there because of how hard he works and how physical he is.”
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