Daisy Chaira only is a sophomore at Avondale Agua Fria High, but she already has an intense desire to improve her ability as a soccer player.
“She is the type of player who doesn’t take any time off during the Christmas break,’’ said Agua Fria coach Daryl Rigsby. “She will go down to the park and take 80 shots on goal.’’
It took only one shot for Chaira to make a difference for the Lady Owls on Friday (Jan. 3).
She used some nifty footwork to put herself in position to take a shot in front of the Glendale Apollo goal, then sent the ball high over the goalkeeper and into the back of the net with 10 minutes left in the game as Agua Fria took a 2-1 victory in the second round of the 3rd annual Sun Valley Soccer Classic at Glendale Copper Canyon.
Agua Fria likely sewed up a spot in Saturday night’s (Jan. 4) title match (6 p.m. start) at Copper Canyon.
“I think this is a team that is hitting its stride,’’ Rigsby said.
Both teams played strong defense in a scoreless first half.
The teams had a few more opportunities to score early in the second half, but could not connect.
Agua Fria then took a 1-0 lead on D’Randa Hooks’ goal on a penalty kick.
Apollo wasted little time in tying it as Daniela Fonseca scored off a deflection almost two minutes later.
“They were able to come right back,’’ Rigsby said.
It appeared that fatigue was starting to set in on Apollo a bit as Agua Fria often beat the Lady Hawks to the ball and maintained the pressure on offense.
Agua Fria had some more scoring opportunities but was just a bit off as Apollo goalkeeper Mariah Perez did a good job.
“We need to make our decisions quicker,’’ Rigsby said.
Then Chaira took over.
“Daisy has played well this year,’’ Rigsby said. “She didn’t come off the field all game.’’