Griffins stop Warriors in final pre-district match

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After dropping a well-contested match to the Santa Fe Prep Griffins 3-0 on Saturday evening, the Warriors might actually have a chance to breathe this season.

Socorro’s next scheduled contest with West Las Vegas has been cancelled, so it won’t take the field again until it travels to Silver City on Sept. 25.

That will give head coach Dennis Walsh and his staff some time to work on a few things before commencing with district play.

“We’re still working on the midfield,” Walsh said. “We’re going to spend a lot of time these next two weeks working on these midfielders, getting in the right position and touching it wide. We just get so plugged up in the middle.”

The head man was referring to the fact that his team has enough talent on the wing to go around, and at least during Saturday’s match, they weren’t spreading the ball out with much consistency.

“I think in the first half we were faster than they were, but there was still this 20-yard gap that we were working too hard to close,” Walsh said. “Our few good runs today were wide. When you’re trying to beat three guys up the middle, it’s probably not going to happen.”

The Warriors did play well defensively for most of the match, but two of Santa Fe Prep’s three goals weren’t so much due to their execution, but to a couple of Socorro miscues.

Graham Sides bounced one off goalkeeper Will Schaffer as he was charging the ball, and another Sides score seemed to come by way of a communication breakdown.

“This was another good offensive team today, and they exploited a couple of mistakes,” Walsh said.

Either way, the Warriors have seen some fantastic soccer teams in the past 10 days, and despite their recent losses, confidence is still high of putting together a successful season, and with a very young team.

The defense has Walsh’s full confidence and looks to be steadily improving, while the offense will look to get back on track after the current break.

“I think together we’re doing the right stuff,” midfielder John Carilli said.

“We have to adapt more to the defense that we’re playing against. That will just come the more we play, the more we practice. I think we have a lot of potential.”

If Socorro wants to realize that potential, Carilli, the team’s leading goal-scorer, thinks his squad will have to readjust its offensive philosophy a bit. Despite the overall positive nature of the Warriors, they’ve still lost four consecutive games and haven’t logged a goal since Aug. 28.

“We tend to try and play the long ball too much. We have to try and slow it down,” he said. “A loss is never good. It hurts not to score. But we did well and fought hard. I’ve got to give it to our team. We’re real young, and as a unit we work pretty hard.”

Socorro will get a chance to go back to work in 13 days when it opens up district play with Silver City on the 25th, and fans will get a chance to see how much the break paid off.

“I think it all starts in the midfield for us,” Walsh said. “We’re just going to keep working on those good midfield touches and try to string those passes together.”

The Warriors return home when they play host to the Hatch Valley Bears on Thursday, Sept. 27.