MHS boys soccer gets back in area hunt

Jose Manduanjo Ortega eludes a Holtville attacker in a March 18 match. The Bulldogs won, 3-1. (Reporter Photo/Drew Granthum)

Jose Manduanjo Ortega eludes a Holtville attacker in a March 18 match. The Bulldogs won, 3-1. (Reporter Photo/Drew Granthum)

By DREW GRANTHUM/Sports Writer

MONTEVALLO —  A big night by Diego Martinez has the Montevallo High boys soccer squad right back in the thick of things in AHSAA Class 1A-4A, Area 5, as the Bulldogs took down Holtville, 3-1.

Montevallo controlled the game offensively, with the Bulldogs registering two goals before ten minutes elapsed in the first half. Irving Salgado notched his twelfth goal of the season to start the match.

At the 31:59 mark, Martinez drilled a shot past Holtville keeper Corey McCullers to put the Dawgs up 2-0.
The Bulldogs kept up the pressure, and Martinez struck again at 18:42 to go up 3-0. Neither team scored again in the first half, and the Dawgs took the momentum and a three goal lead into halftime.

The second half turned into a defensive showcase, with the Bulldogs of the Holtville variety began to up the pressure. HHS took several shots at Montevallo keeper Corey Hudson, with Hudson rebuking each.

With 6:45 left in the contest, Holtville finally got on the board as Brian Conn put one past Hudson to get the visitors back in the contest, 3-1.

Fortunately for Montevallo, it was all Holtville could muster offensively, as the home team took the 3-1 win.

Head coach Chris Galloway said he was proud of his team’s effort.

“It’s a huge win,” he said. “It’s the game we needed to get back into the area (race). (Holtville was) the leaders of the area, and we’ve evened up with them.”
Galloway was quick to praise the effort of his squad’s ability to learn a new offense.

“It started last night (against) ACA,” he said. “We switched up our system a little bit to get more through balls up to the front to our offensive players. Our goal tonight was to get the ball to (our shooters) to get them as many chances on goal as possible.”

The game wasn’t with incident, however, as a red card was issued to Montevallo following a postgame dust up between the two squads.

“Our player and (a Holtville player) got kind of tangled up over a ball right there at the (end),” he said. “It kind of flared up with the words, and unfortunately we had to take a red card. That hurts, but we can overcome that.”

The Bulldogs move on to face Tallassee March 21.