With damp, blustery conditions causing the ball to sail and players to slide on the slippery turf, the Moriarty High School’s boys soccer team fell Oct. 11 to the visiting Los Alamos Hilltoppers.
Moriarty (7-8, 1-1) was riding a two-game winning streak before the Hilltoppers (9-5-1, 1-0-1) stormed into town and handed the Pintos an 8-1 thumping.
“It was just one of those games that got out of control,” Moriarty head coach Jordan Allcorn said.
Pintos goalkeeper C.J. Trammell was under siege right from the start, grabbing two saves in the game’s first minute. He finished with 15 saves.
Los Alamos scored its first goal in the 8th minute.
Five minutes later, while the Hilltoppers were attacking, Pintos midfielder Luke Lionbarger collided with a Los Alamos player.
Lionbarger’s head smashed into the Hilltopper’s mouth and both players came out of the game.
“Luke got a cut on his head—he basically has a bite mark on his skull,” Allcorn said.
Lionbarger was treated on the sideline and then was taken to urgent care.
The Hilltoppers scored 2 goals in the next two minutes and added 4 more to go up 7-0 at halftime.
“Luke’s one of our key players—it definitely hurt once we lost him,” Allcorn said. “It just kind of snowballed after that.”
Late in the first half, Moriarty’s Frank McCleave tried to get something started for the Pintos by launching two long-range shots from 25 yards out—one missed wide left, and the other was saved by the Los Alamos goalkeeper as McCleave slid in the grass and pounded his hand into the turf in frustration.
The Pintos only goal came in the 58th minute when Jordan Horoschak took a cross pass from McCleave at the top of the 18-yard box, cut past a Los Alamos defender and poked the ball into the back of the net.
“I looked up and saw the goal and there wasn’t a defender in front of me so I just took a shot,” Horoschak said.
Moriarty defended better in the second half, matching the Hilltoppers 1-1.
Allcorn noted that the Pintos made some adjustments at halftime, and their goal in the second half was to keep competing and not get mercy-ruled.
“It was an ugly one,” Allcorn said. “But, we just gotta get better.”