Last Friday – January the 27th – the Breakers took on the Anzar Hawks at home. Coming off of two wins, the Breakers were confident, but also knew that Anzar would provide them with a greater challenge than their previous two opponents.
Applying pressure early, PG was almost immediately rewarded with a goal. In the 10th minute, a cross from Eric Santos drifted dangerously into the box. Shey Gibson, coming down the right wing, outpaced the opposing defender and caught the ball with the outside of his right foot, sending it past the goalkeeper for a remarkable goal. As a result, Gibson and Santos became the first Pacific Grove players to score or assist in three regular season games this year.
Just ten minutes later, Gibson nearly doubled his total when he managed to break past the Anzar defense to find himself one on one with the goalkeeper. However, Gibson’s shot hit the goalkeeper in the chest, causing it to ricochet over the crossbar.
The rest of the half was dominated by Anzar, after injuries to Parker McAnally and Jackson Schoolmeester forced the Breakers to readjust their lineup and move certain players out of their normal positions. PG held strong, however, and prevented the Hawks from scoring before halftime. Goalkeeper Thomas Pontarolo recorded several outstanding saves.
The second half was back and forth, with Anzar searching desperately for an equalizer while Pacific Grove looked for a second goal to put the game away. For the Breakers, striker Jake Haney managed several shots, as did midfielder Caelum Kim-Sanders, but none found the back of the net. Around the 55th minute, centerback Myles Kerchner stole the ball and sprinted past the Anzar defenders, who were attempting to play an offside trap at midfield. Kerchner had miles of space on his way to goal before he was taken down from behind by an Anzar player.
The yellow card that followed would not be the only one on the day. Just minutes before, Pacific Grove’s Shey Gibson received a yellow card for jawing at one of the Anzar players after a contested tackle. Anzar, for their part, would receive a total of four yellow cards as the game escalated into an increasingly physical and dirty affair.
Late in the second half, Anzar began pushing all of their numbers forward in search of a goal to tie the game, forcing Pacific Grove to play hard defense. Anzar would eventually find their equalizer, getting in behind the Breaker defense to force a one on one versus Pontarolo, who could do nothing as the Anzar striker struck the ball to the far post.
In the remaining four minutes the Breakers worked hard to reestablish their lead but were unable to do so. The game ended at one goal a piece.
The Breakers will look to continue their regular season unbeaten streak at home against Oakwood on Wednesday, February 1st.