Three East Hampton Football Club players, namely Julian Barahona, Antonio Padilla, and Xavi Piedra Martel, figured prominently in the indoor soccer finals played at the Sportime Arena in Amagansett Saturday night.
Barahona’s one-touch goal from about 12 yards out early in the second half of the over-38 final in which the Criolleros (Creoles), Barahona’s team, and La Tri vied was enough to assure Los Criolleros the victory.
It wasn’t the only time Barahona, the team’s tall center forward, was able to get a shot off that night, but La Tri’s goalie, Milton Reinoso, was stingy.
In the game’s waning moments, Reinoso came out of the cage to try to even the count, but for tripping Barahona at midcourt he was ejected. Pablo Jimenes took over. Klever Lopez got off a creditable shot from midcourt in the final seconds, but it went wide of the Criolleros’ cage.
The women’s game, next up, had more action than the over-38 men’s contest. Scorpion won it, defeating Los Andes 2-1, thanks to goals by Lisseth Rodriguez, arguably the best ball-handler on the court, and by Katherine Gordillo. Sandra Lopes, who anchored Los Andes, winning just about all of the contested balls she vied for, scored Los Andes’s sole goal.
Jessica Barros of Los Andes and Maria Guanga of Scorpion each came close to scoring as the game began. Midway through the first period, Rodriguez sprinted down the right side in time to catch up with a pass from Anna Strong and send the ball by Los Andes’s goalie, Tania Pineda.
Just before the halftime break, Rodriguez threatened again, following a chip and a header, but her shot was off the mark.
Scorpion continued to play aggressively in the second period. Elizabeth Guazhambo had a chance to make it 2-0 in the 35th minute but failed to gather in a corner kick cross that landed near her in front of the goal. Soon after, however, Gordillo, a defender, dashed in on the left side, catching up with a crossing pass and beating Pineda to the near corner. Rodriguez almost followed suit when, with 5 minutes and 50 seconds left on the clock, she took aim for the lower right corner, a shot that Pineda kicked away just before it crossed the line.
Lopes finally got Los Andes on the board, when, in the final minute, her high, chipped shot from midcourt sailed over the outstretched arms of Scorpion’s goalie, Nidia Rios.
The finals’ finale, which pitted Liga Sayausi versus Su Madre, proved to be a crowd-pleaser, with virtually nonstop action throughout the 50 minutes of play.
With Piedra Martel, Padilla, and Cristian Gavilanes, Liga Sayausi, which won 5-2, proved to be the stronger of the two teams, though Marcos Loja of Su Madre was every bit their equal, at least within the confines of Sportime’s arena.
Padilla, Gavilanes, and Piedra Martel combined time and again on attacks, though their team led only 2-1 at the half.
Gavilanes broke the ice, cashing in on a corner kick in the eighth minute. Su Madre’s Harry Pena had a chance to tie the count in the 15th, but blew the chance. A minute or two later, Loja, on a counter, pulled the trigger, but Santiago Torres, Liga Sayausi’s goalie, robbed him with a leaping save. With eight minutes until the break, Miguel Bautista rammed home a pass from Loja for 1-1.
Su Madre’s keeper, Jorge Lopez, made a nice save on a backheader by Gavilanes in the 20th minute, but then Piedra Martel deposited into the cage the rebound of a shot taken by Gavilanes, putting Liga Sayausi up for good, as it was to turn out.
A beautiful shot by Padilla in the 35th minute extended his team’s lead to 3-1. Having taken a pass from Piedra Martel, Padilla charged forward and slipped the ball between Lopez’s legs into the cage.
But it was not over by any means. In the 39th minute, Pena, with Bautista assisting, made it 3-2, and moments later Bautista’s blast from about 12 yards out banged off of Torres’s chest.
The action continued to be fast and rough in the final 10 minutes, though, again, Liga Sayausi’s forwards proved to be quicker and more opportunistic.
Piedra Martel’s second goal of the night, which put Liga Sayausi up 4-2, came with six minutes to play, and, with 2:17 left on the clock, Piedra Martel, his back to the goal, capped his hat trick, flicking the ball over the line with the heel of his foot.
In related news, the East Hampton Football Club lost 2-0 to the Irish Rovers in an away game Sunday, and Glen Cove Avellino, which for a brief period last week had been the runner-up to East Hampton in the Long Island Soccer Football League’s Division 1A flight, retook first place by virtue of a 1-0 win over the Port Jefferson Fusion.
There are no L.I.S.F.L. games scheduled for Sunday. Forest Park is to play the E.H.F.C. here on April 23 at the Ross School at 2 p.m.