COSTA MESA — Emotions run high whenever Estancia and Costa Mesa meet in a high school sporting event. So what did Estancia Coach Jessica Perry do before the rival schools played a girls' soccer match on Tuesday?
She refused to talk to her players about their opponent by name.
"It didn't matter that it was the cross-town rival, it just needed to be a great performance," Perry said. "It was a total must win."
The Eagles went out and turned in a dominating performance at Jim Scott Stadium. They were the visitors, but they owned the field, winning the Orange Coast League match, 6-0.
The result was a crucial one for defending champion Estancia, which is trying to get back in the race for first place in league.
The Eagles helped that effort by closing out the first part of league with a big victory, their first against Costa Mesa in two years. Estancia moves into third place at 2-1-2 in league, behind second-place Godinez (2-0-3) and first-place Laguna Beach (3-0-2).
Costa Mesa went winless in its first five league contests, forcing Coach Dan Johnston to say, "We're pretty much out of it." The Eagles became the second straight league opponent to rout the Mustangs, 6-0.
"We were making a lot of silly mistakes defensively and they had a two-to-one margin on us on 50-50 balls, which is a pretty good indication of our lack of hustle out here," said Johnston, whose team is 0-3-2 in league. "I'm very upset with this team."
The opposite is how Perry feels about her Eagles. She was elated to see her team break out offensively.
In one match, Estancia doubled its goal total from the previous four league contests.
The Eagles produced a season-best six goals and they did so with a balanced attack. Five players scored, starting with Alondra Guzman in the seventh minute.
The freshman striker dribbled in all alone from the right side before beating the goalkeeper to the far post. Guzman started the scoring and she ended it, finding the back of the net in 79th minute.
The scoring flurry by Estancia came in the second half. A one-goal lead at halftime quickly turned into three in the second half.
Haley Flores and Christy Brown each recorded goals in the first 10 minutes of the second half. The Eagles weren't finished producing scoring chances.
One Costa Mesa defender got away with taking down Heather Flores in the box. Instead of earning a penalty kick, the Eagles got a corner kick.
Heather took the corner kick and the senior sent a beauty to the far post, where Marlene Calderon jumped and used her head to score. The Eagles seemed to find the back of the net in a variety of ways.
The most surprising goal belonged to Zuleyma Guzman. Late in the match, she struck the ball high from the left side, and somehow it found the upper-right corner for a goal.
When Zuleyma exited, Perry had one question for her.
"Which body part was that shot off of?" Perry asked Zuleyma, who pointed to her right cleat and then laughed.