Aberdeen hopped back into the driver’s seat on Tuesday. The Bobcats avenged their loss to Tumwater earlier this season with a 2-1 win over the Thunderbirds in an Evergreen 2A Conference match at Stewart Field.
The Bobcats (5-1, 9-2) were tied with Tumwater for the league lead going into the night, but Aberdeen worked to control possession for most of the game and was able to score two goals in the first half to edge past the Thunderbirds.
“We tried to posses the ball more,” Aberdeen head coach Larry Fleming said. “Pretty much it was the same game the first time at Tumwater, we just scored this time. At Tumwater, we just tried to send it and they would head it out every time, so this time we got it wide and played it across and we had some great chances.”
Aberdeen’s strategy worked throughout the first half. Just 10 minutes into the game, Miguel Torres was able to put a cross in to Luis Garcia, who narrowly missed a header.
In the 19th minute, the Bobcats were able to cash in on a crossing pass from Tony Oropeza to Cesar Corona. Corona had just moved up to forward moments earlier and made an immediate impact, taking the pass from Oropeza and blasting the ball past the Tumwater keeper.
Aberdeen’s Alejandro Felipe added the game winner in the 37th minute. The Bobcats earned a corner kick and, off the kick, the ball shot high into the air in front of the goal where Felipe was able to fight off a defender to settle the ball and kick the ball right past the Thunderbird goalkeeper.
Tumwater pushed forward early in the second half and was able to get a couple of chances, but couldn’t capitalize, sending two shots wide of goal in the first ten minutes of the half.
The Bobcats got a scare in the 62nd minute when Torres went down hard on his shoulder when he was battling for the ball near the sideline. The senior would miss the rest of the game.
The T’birds’ lone goal came with just moments left in stoppage time when Ryan Warren slipped past the Bobcat defense and chipped the ball past AHS goalkeeper Alexis Garcia-Guzman.
Fleming cited Robby Lewis and Dylan Hughes for their defense and Torres, Corona and Oropeza for their work in possessing the ball in the midfield.
“It was a great effort and a big win,” Fleming said. “This puts us in the driver’s seat so if we play well the rest of the way we are number one.”
Aberdeen travels to Chehalis on Thursday.