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1996-1997 BOYS' SOCCER PREVIEW | SIX TEAMS TO WATCH

Orange

December 04, 1996

Coach: Kevin Esparza (first year).

1995-96: 19-3-6, 6-0-4 in Century League; won Southern Section Division II title, beating Compton Dominguez, 1-0.

Key returners: Danny Califf, sweeper, first-team all-section, Jr.; Victor Diaz, forward, first-team all-section, Sr.; Alex Garcia, first-team all-league, had team-leading 24 goals last year, Jr.; Stephen Gonzalez, midfielder, first-team Times all-county, Sr.; Genar Lopez, first-team all-league, midfielder, Sr.

Key newcomers: Alfonso Montes, defender, Sr.; Antonio Ruiz, defender, Jr.; Neil Van Zuiden, goalkeeper, played baseball last season, Sr.

Outlook: Don't expect Orange to go away and hide after winning the section title. In fact, the Panthers will probably be favored to repeat. Orange, which returns eight starters, didn't miss a beat over the summer, losing only one game. Califf, Diaz and Gonzalez give the Panthers talent in each area of the field. The biggest question is at goalkeeper, where Van Zuiden must replace Aldo Zuniga, Times Orange County player of the year. Another problem could be discipline. The Panthers were probably the county's most penalized team last year.

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