LA CRESCENTA — From firsthand experience, the Crescenta Valley High girls' soccer team should have known as well as anyone that there's no security in a two-goal lead against Burbank.
If they had forgotten coming into Friday's Pacific League rematch at Crescenta Valley, the Falcons got a harsh reminder in a 2-2 tie that was entirely reminiscent of the teams' first meeting on Dec. 15 at Burbank, which also saw the Bulldogs score two unanswered goals to steal a 2-2 draw.
"It was exactly the same, except [this time] they scored their first goal in the first half," said Crescenta Valley Coach Jorden Schulz of the similarity between the two games. "I think we dominated the first half and they dominated the second half. We blew it twice, basically."
At the exact midpoint of the second half, Burbank's Courtney Austin scored on a header off a corner kick from Katie Beattie to bring the game to what would be its final score after Anabell Gonzalez had begun the Bulldogs' comeback with a goal in the 28th minute.
"Again, we're playing down, 0-2, but our team doesn't quit," said Burbank Coach Loi Phan, whose team is now 7-4-5 and 4-0-4 in league. "Our girls fought back and that's all I can ask from them.
"It was a great game on both sides."
Crescenta Valley (7-3-4, 5-0-3) again got off to a fast start with two goal inside the first 19 minutes.
Jordan Royer got the Falcons on the board with a perfectly-placed 10-yard free kick from the left side that hooked just inside the right post in the 14th minute
The Falcons struck again five minutes later with a Royer corner kick into the goal box that Mallory Carcich headed out of the air and into the goal for a 2-0 lead.
Gonzalez, who scored both Burbank goals on Dec. 15, was set up with a look from about 15 yards out a right-to-left cross from Austin on a rebound after teammate Alexandra Amela had overshot the goal on an attempt from the left side.
"If you're down, 2-0, [in the second half] that's kind of tough, so we got one at 2-1 and we told them, 'Look, last time, we were down, 0-2, and now we're only down one,'" said Phan, who also said it was the first time his team had played at CV without taking a loss. "That kind of pumped our girls up and we were ready to go."
The Falcons had several shots go awry or get saved as they attempted to take the lead once again over the final 20 minutes, but Schulz said the win was lost when the Falcons let down after going up by two goals.
"[We needed to] play harder," Schulz said. "The game's not over so don't stop playing.
"I'll hand it to Burbank, though, they don't ever quit. They take advantage of us at a low point, they get two goals and tie, so it's our fault. We should have held the lead both times and we blew it twice."
Despite the tie, Crescenta Valley remained alone in first place in league with 18 points as a result of second-place Burroughs tying Pasadena, 2-2, and bringing its point total up to 17. Burbank, with yet another stalemate, is in third with 16 points.