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Boys soccer: Second-half splurge leads Willmar Cards over Rocori

Willmar scores five times in the final 40 minutes to beat Rocori, 6-0.

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Cardinals senior defender Jacob Reyes smiles during introductions before Willmar faced the Rocori Spartans on Monday, Sept. 12, 2022, at Willmar High School.
Michael Lyne / West Central Tribune
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WILLMAR — For a third consecutive game, the Willmar boys soccer team utilized a frenzy of goals in the second half to beat Rocori and remain undefeated Monday evening.

The Cardinals took a 1-0 lead into halftime and tacked on five more goals in the second half of the Central Lakes Conference match to defeat the Spartans 6-0.

“Rocori has been a team that is making steady progress over the years,” Cardinals head coach Jeff Winter said. “I am pleased to see that we took it to them tonight.”

Through five games this season, Winter mentioned the team has had some slow starts. However, tonight was not the case as the team outshot Rocori 16-5.

Cardinals sophomore midfielder Miguel Altamirano Toruno scored the match’s opening goal five minutes into the first half after attacking the net hard and burying the ball.

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Cardinals sophomore midfielder Miguel Altamirano Toruno waves toward the crowd after scoring a goal against the Rocori Spartans on Monday, Sept. 12, 2022, at Willmar High School.
Michael Lyne / West Central Tribune

“Miguel’s goal took some pressure off and then we could dictate the flow of the game,” Winter said. “I was thinking that once we scored a second goal it would be really tough for Rocori to come back.”

And Winter was right. After junior midfielder Idd Ali scored three minutes into the second half off a corner kick from junior midfielder Adan Villarreal, the Cardinals scored four more goals that all came within 15 minutes of action.

Willmar senior midfielder Abdurahman Yusuf and Villarreal both found the back of the net, two minutes apart at the 61- and 63-minute marks.

The Cardinals’ final pair of goals came five minutes apart and both were executed penalty kicks.

Cardinals senior defender Kadar Muhumed buried his penalty kick opportunity. Then, Winter gave senior goalkeeper Andrew Ziebarth the nod to take Willmar’s second penalty kick of the night and he buried the ball into the back of the net.

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Cardinals junior captain/striker Isaac Zelaya Velasquez battles for possession of the ball in Willmar's attacking third during a match against the Rocori Spartans on Monday, Sept. 12, 2022, at Willmar High School.
Michael Lyne / West Central Tribune

“Andrew is quite a good goalie. He’s a smart guy and has learned over the years the angles of when to come out and when to stay in the net,” Winter said of Ziebarth, who had a five-save shutout. “He’s strong on his feet and the guys can play it back to him with confidence.”

The Cardinals (5-0 overall, 3-0 CLC) have earned shutouts in four of their five matches this season.

Willmar hosts Alexandria at 5 p.m. on Tuesday and will look to remain undefeated.

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The Cardinals defeated the Spartans 6-0 to remain undefeated.

Willmar 6, Rocori 0

Rocori (2-4)................. 0  0 — 0
Willmar (5-0)............... 1  5 — 6

FIRST HALF – (1) W: Miguel Altamirano Toruno 5th minute (Idd Ali)

SECOND HALF – (2) W: Ali (Adan Villarreal) 43rd minute. (3) W: Villarreal (Abdurahman Yusuf) 61st minute. (4) W: Yusuf (Isaac Zelaya Velasquez) 63rd minute. (5) W: Kadar Muhumed (unassisted) 70th minute. (6) W: Andrew Ziebarth (unassisted) 75th minute.

SHOTS ON GOAL – R: 5. W: 16

GOALIE SAVES – Rocori: Luis Lopez, 10 … Willmar: Andrew Ziebarth, 5

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Cardinals junior defender Wilfredo Chavez boots the ball into the box during a match against the Rocori Spartans on Monday, Sept. 12, 2022, at Willmar High School.
Michael Lyne / West Central Tribune

Michael Lyne joined the West Central Tribune as a sports reporter in May 2022, following his graduation from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, where he graduated with a bachelors degree in journalism and a minor degree in Spanish studies.

You may reach Michael at mlyne@wctrib.com, or by calling (320) 214-4345.
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