When Cimarron-Memorial and Desert Oasis met last season, both boys soccer matches ended in blowouts, with the Spartans winning 6-1 and 7-0.
And though the match was much closer Thursday, the outcome was the same with Cimarron earning a 2-0 win over the visiting Diamondbacks.
Cimarron did all of its damage in the first half, with Scotty Robles and Gustavo Ortega both scoring on assists from Nico DeLaTorre.
And while Spartans coach Mark Bailey wished the surge would have continued into the second half, he’s pleased with where his team stands. Cimarron (6-2-2, 1-0-1 Southwest League) has made the playoffs 13 times in the last 14 years, and looks poised for another postseason berth.
“I’m way more confident this year,” Bailey said. “We’re way more disciplined.
“If there is a year, this is the year just because chemistry-wise. It feels real good.”
Robles, who scored his team-leading 11th goal, agrees.
“It’s better than last year,” Robles said. “We’re passing the ball more. We talk more.”
Solid defense helped Richard Crews earn his second shutout of the season for Cimarron, equaling his total from 2012.
Despite familiar fate, things could have gone much worse for the Diamondbacks (3-4-1, 0-2) on Thursday.
Goalkeeper Damien Herrera did the best he could with constant pressure coming from the Cimarron strikers.
“From last year to this year, he’s tripled in skill,” Desert Oasis coach William Matthews said.
What worried the Desert Oasis coach wasn’t his goalie, but instead the lack of offense.
“Getting a proper attack was tough,” Matthews said. “We need the midfield to generate more of an attack presence, not just rely on strikers.”
The Spartans held possession for the majority of the match and took more than a dozen shots, keeping Herrera very busy.
Bailey likes the direction of the squad and is confident about his team’s playoff chances, but knows there’s plenty of work to do.
“Our big test will be Monday when we play (Bishop) Gorman,” Bailey said. “We’ll really know where we stand after (that).”