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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS

El Camino Real Shows Its Nerve in 1-0 Victory

City Section boys' soccer final: Falkinstein scores in 67th minute, Feldman's two saves thwart University.

March 04, 2001|CHRIS SHAFFER | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Since November, David Hussey has been nervous walking the sidelines.

Hussey, El Camino Real High boys' soccer coach, knew he had the best team in the City Section. Anything less than a City championship would be unacceptable.

The Conquistadores did what they promised four months ago by bringing the City Section championship back to the San Fernando Valley with a 1-0 victory over University on Saturday at UCLA.

"We are no longer over-achievers, we are achievers," said Hussey, whose team recorded its school-record 19th shutout of the season. "We started at No. 1 and our goal was to end No. 1. A lot of people tried to take us down off the field and I expected them to try to take us down on the field, but we didn't let that bother us.

"If this is not the best team from the Valley, then it has to be one of the top two that has ever played."

Yan Falkinstein scored in the 67th minute to give the Conquistadores (27-3) their second City Section title in three years.

"The trophy is back where it belongs," said captain Zach Feldman of El Camino Real. "We earned it."

Falkinstein got credit for the winning goal, but midfielder Jeremy Huang did all the work.

Huang dribbled into Wildcats' territory and, running at full speed, ripped a shot from 50 yards that hit the crossbar.

Falkinstein headed in the rebound.

"I didn't think twice," Huang said. "It was instinct. I saw the open goal and took a shot. Right when it left my foot I had this feeling I hit it right where I needed to.

"Once it hit the post I saw Yan come out of nowhere and head it in. This kind of stuff never happens to me."

What was most impressive was the El Camino Real defense. The sixth-seeded Wildcats (22-6-2) were blanked for only the second time this season.

University averages more than three goals.

"Going into the match we knew they had the best offense in the City and we had the best defense in the City," said Feldman, who made two saves with his head at the goal line.

Feldman saved what would have been a goal by Juan Andrade in the 39th minute.

He stopped another goal on a header by Martin Flores in the 70th minute.

"We are strong in the back," Feldman said. "We've been strong there all year long. When our offense isn't producing we can rely on the defense."

SOCCER PLAYOFFS

Saturday's results

BOYS

City Section championship

El Camino Real 1, University 0

Southern Section final

Division IV

St. Francis 3, Diamond Ranch 1

GIRLS

City Championship

El Camino Real 4, Chatsworth 0

City Invitational

Poly 2, Marshall 1

Southern Section finals

Division II

Buena 1, Mission Viejo 1

Division IV

Louisville 2, Harvard-Westlake 2

*

MORE SOCCER COVERAGE ON D14

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