Camp Verde boys soccer moves onto to final four
Two years ago against Show Low, Camp Verde High boys soccer player Manuel Interiano missed his penalty kick during the shootout in the state quarterfinals but on Wednesday night he exorcised those demons.
Interiano, now a senior captain for the Cowboys, scored the game winning goal in No. 3 Camp Verde’s 2-1 win over No. 6 Show Low at home, also in the quarterfinals.
“My sophomore year we played them first round and i missed in the PKs and that’s why we lost, so there was so much emotion when I shot it, it felt good,” Interiano said. “It just felt really good, it felt amazing.”
Camp Verde advances to the semifinals to face No. 2 Chino Valley at Gilbert Williams Field at 3 p.m. on Friday.
In 2017 No. 6 Show Low upset No. 2 Camp Verde on the road by winning the shootout 5-3 after a 1-1 draw.
On Wednesday however, Interiano scored 63rd minute, about four minutes after Show Low found the equalizer.
In kicks-from-the-mark, five players from each side shoot from the penalty spot to break the tie and if the shoot out is tied after the initial five, more players shoot in a sudden situation.
“It was awesome, it was awesome,” CV head coach David Miller said about Interiano scoring the game winner. “We worked on shots-from-the-mark (Tuesday) and he was adamant that he wanted to be in the top five and generally young men when they’re not successful they want to run and hide and instead he wanted to take the challenge and he wanted to be the one to make the shot and so it was great, it was great, it was great that he made the shot.”
Sophomore Gary Ortega opened the scoring with a goal in the 29th minute. The Cowboys had most of the chances but couldn’t put the Cougars away.
Camp Verde outshot Show Low 18-2.
This the fourth straight season Camp Verde has faced Show Low in the state tournament. SL had won the last two.
“I thought we dominated that game, time of possession, the momentum was all our direction, we played on their end most of the time, the time when they got attacks was when we got out of shape and we work on staying in shape and covering for that but we were able to regain our composure,” Miller said.
Show Low scored on a rebound after a free kick.
“It’s unfortunate that it got tied up at the end, I thought it’s a play that could have gone either way but it showed the character of the team, when we come back and we haven’t had many shut outs this year and we played from behind a couple of times and i just think that lends to the character of the team and that’s what we really want to build on these boys is character,” Miller said. “The final one we scored on is a play that we work on literally all the time and it was so cool to see it work and see the two boys who do it because they’re the ones who we lecture all the time about doing it, so it was an awesome play.”
Camp Verde won the state championship in 2004 and 1994.
CV (11-2) beat Show Low 2-0 at home on Sept. 20, avenging that loss in the playoffs last year.
“It’s actually pretty hard, we knew they’re a tough team,” Interiano said about beating the same team twice in one season. “ The first time we played them, we beat them 2-0 so this time when we played them we just had to play hard and we had that confidence already because we played them already, so we knew, so we just had to come together and play hard.”
The Cowboys, champions of the Central Region with a record of 7-0, beat Chino Valley 2-1 at home on Oct. 15.
Chino Valley held off No. 7 Snowflake at home on Wednesday night in the quarters, winning 2-1 after overtime. Snowflake beat the Cowboys 4-0 at home in the first game of the season.
Camp Verde’s October win over Chino Valley was their first over “big brother” since 2011 when they beat the them in Chino Valley 1-0 in overtime in a regular season tournament.
“Again if it’s not one, it’s the other, if it’s not Show Low, it’s Chino,” Miller said about CV’s rivals. “We match up well against them. They have a couple of really good kids that we know well, both in club and here, so it’ll be like playing your big brother. We’ll be there to give them our best to knock them off. We love playing them, it’s always a good game, it’s always a challenge and it’s great. It will be tough to get a second win on them but we’ll try it.”
Camp Verde ended up 5-0 at home and went 6-2 on the road. They didn’t play in any regular season tournaments so they didn’t have any neutral matches.
“Oh it’s amazing, heck yeah I like it, especially my last year,” Interiano said about going 5-0 at home. “I like that this is my last home game, especially a big win like this.”