Titans level with Rams

Tahquitz Boys’ Soccer drew even against Murrieta Mesa last Thursday, 1-1

Photos by Corey Evan / The Valley Chronicle
Titan Christian Betancourt retrieves the ball for Tahquitz last Thursday.

■ By Corey Evan / Reporter

Our valley may not be a particularly cash-rich area these days, but according to locals, it is at least rich with sporting culture. Tahquitz High School attempted to honor that last Thursday, when their soccer boys took on the Murrieta Mesa Rams.
The first half of the game saw a lot of back-and-forth action, with several attempts made at the goal. While none of those attempts made it in, the two teams would stay on each other into the second half.
After the interval, the Titans came very close to scoring the evening’s first goal less than five minutes in. The referees, however, called it no good on a technicality. Five minutes later, another Titan attempt on the Rams’ goal came close, but no banana.
To pour salt in the wound, Murrieta Mesa would score instead, with 25 minutes still in it. At the 20-minute mark, Titan Alexis Vilchis took a spill on the pitch, but walked it off like a champ. Then with 13 minutes left, Alvin Robeldo equalized for Tahquitz. With one goal each, the teams ended up with a draw.
After the game, Assistant Coach Phil Speller took a moment to reflect on the improvement of his Titans.
“Actually, I’m very impressed with how we played tonight; we’ve had a run of bad games lately. Played really well and just got no results,” said Speller. “Officiating’s been a little suspect. You kind of get used to that with high school [soccer]. Overall, the boys played really well tonight.”
Being from across the pond, Speller has noted just how deep the sport of soccer runs in our valley…or as his chums in London call it, football. “There’s hispanic heritage here, obviously,” he added. “It’s a big game in the hispanic community, like where I come from in England. Unfortunately, I think demographics play a lot into it. The wealth is not here, so I think our kids get overlooked. There’s a lot of talent in this valley!”
One example of that talent is Titan sophomore Rodrigo Reyes, who described the season’s struggles from his vantage point.
“We’ve been in a drought, but we’ll come back strong,” Reyes promised. “We’ve just gotta come back stronger than everyone. We’re going to turn up and be league champs this year!”
The Titans do have their work cut out for them, as they are currently 3-5-3 for the season. Today, weather permitting, the Beaumont Cougars are coming to Titan Canyon to sharpen their claws. Let us hope the Titans have their own razor-edge!

The Titans discuss strategy during halftime.

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