Cougars win Adidas West Coast Showcase

Marlem Reyes, Reporter

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The Cougar boy’s soccer team will host its own Cougar Classic Varsity Tournament today and Saturday at Clovis High. The tournament will showcase some of the top talent in the Central Section this season.

The Cougars will head into the tournament with an 8-0-2 record. The team added to the wins column Monday December 11 with a 9-2 victory over Hoover, and again on Wednesday December 13 with a 5-0 shutout over Golden Valley.

The impressive part of Clovis High’s pre-season play came on the weekend of December 7-9, when the reigning Central Section champions won the Adidas West Coast Showcase in Bell Gardens, LA. The three-day tournament featured eight teams from the West Division and eight teams from the Coast Division.

The Cougars went 1-0-2 in pool play before competing in the final game.

The boys beat Moorpark Musketeers in the opening game 3-0 with two goals from senior Oscar Rubalcava and one by Mathew Sanchez.

The Cougars tied Warren 0-0 and Granada Hills Charter 2-2 with goals by seniors Carlos Osuna and Oscar Rubalcava before moving on to the championship game.

In the final game the Cougars’ opponent, Palos Verdes, fell behind after the first half by three goals and did not catch up.

“We lost to that same team last year and we didn’t want to feel that again,” Osuna said. Osuna and Rubalcava scored again in the victory game.

This is the second year the Cougars have participated in the Adidas West Coast Showcase. Initially the out-of-town tournament was a team bonding opportunity.

Head coach Dan Amparano said, “There was no awe factor anymore for these L.A teams who are supposedly ranked really high.”

Besides the big victory, Rubalcava was selected tournament MVP. He scored four goals and had three assists.

“He was on another level this weekend,” Amparano said. “There wasn’t a defender out there that could stop him.” Rubalcava has been a varsity soccer player, along with eight other seniors, since his freshman year.

“We got tested but we did really well” Rubalcava said, “and did what we had to.”

The varsity team holds 16 returning seniors and one freshman player, the first in four years, Alejandro Chavez.

“He [Chavez] has good mentors and Clark has won the past four years- plus there are plenty juniors” Amparano said. “We’re set.”

“It’s different this year,” Osuna said. “I feel like we [seniors] have matured more.”

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Cougars win Adidas West Coast Showcase