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Santa Margarita Takes Care of North

February 24, 1996|DAN ARRITT

Santa Margarita's defense was responsible for the Eagles' 2-0 victory over Riverside North in a Division III boys' soccer quarterfinal game Friday at Santa Margarita. But give the assist to North goalkeeper Trenton Uliciny.

Late in the first half, when Uliciny punched a high shot out of the penalty box, he followed through with a backhand to Santa Margarita's Chon Kantikovit.

The blow proved more harmful to Uliciny, who was given a yellow card, and North, which watched Kantikovit make the penalty kick, passing reserve goalkeeper Michael Swinehart for a 1-0 lead.

That cushion was enough for the Eagles (16-6-2), who advanced to the semifinals.

Santa Margarita's defense, led by goalkeeper Sean Spreen and defenders Nick Sparks and Matt Blasdel, kept the Huskies from mounting serious challenges.

Early in the second half, North (18-3-4) was awarded several set plays in Santa Margarita territory, but Spreen used his height and long reach to pick the ball out of the air.

At one point, Spreen dived to his left to save a head shot and his head crashed into the left post.

The Eagles sealed the victory when Matt Moses raced down the left side, beat Uliciny and fed Tim Pierce in the middle. A North defender intentionally stopped Pierce's shot with his arm, resulting in a red-card ejection and another Santa Margarita penalty kick.

Brian Piesner took the shot and scored his team-high 15th goal of the season. Santa Margarita Coach Curt Bauer said his team's tempo was the key.

"We kept our feet on the ground and didn't try to rush things," he said. "It's nice to see us maintain our style of play against a tough team like North."

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