On Friday night westside Chandler high schools Hamilton and Chandler battled for the Bill Vanney-Tempe Diablos Soccer Classic title.
Not to be left behind on Saturday, eastside Chandler high schools Perry and Basha duked it out for the championship of Campo Verde High's Coyote Classic.
The nod Saturday afternoon went to Perry as the Pumas scored a goal in each half and blanked Basha, 2-0, to win the tournament at Campo Verde High.
A long tournament that began last Saturday (Dec. 7) and covered five matches in eight days concluded with Perry (3-1-2) scoring a pair of nifty goals, The first came in the 30th minute as Perry had gradually taken over offensively after Basha came out firing the first 15-20 minutes. Iasiah Lidell set up Perry's goal with a run that appeared might end with Lidell scoring. Lidell let loose with what likely was a cross to the far post. Teammate Cole Warner charged through the box an made sure hammering the ball in the right side of the net for the 1-0 advantage.
Basha first-year coach Scott De La Fe said the goal took a bit of the fight out of his team after he figured they were the aggressors at least early in the first half.
Further hampering Basha's comeback was Perry's second goal, which came just nine minutes in to the second half. Junior midfielder Tristan Cooper dribbled around defenders near the top of the box and then beautifully fed freshman Dane Reali for a winner and a 2-0 edge.
“I told them at halftime we needed to pick it up and get off more shots,” De La Fe said. “They say it takes 10 shots to make one. We needed more shots.”
Basha (4-1-2) put on more pressure on the offensive end the second half, but a free kick and two corners were among several good chances that didn't come to fruition. The free kick from about 40 yards out caromed off the cross bar. Perry keeper Colin Graham saved a sure goal in the second half with a leaping deflection.
Both teams played with three starters out due to injury suffered earlier in the year or in matches from the tournament. Perry first-year coach John Roberts liked the results his team produced during the week — a 3-0-2 record. The Pumas are 3-1-2 overall with a season-opening power-point match loss to Hamilton (2-0 )their only blemish.
“We're in a transistion phase,” Roberts said as a new coach. “We've been working on a lot of things. One is finishing an Cole (Warner) did a great job of that on the first goal…..
“Tournaments take a lot out of you. We had three players hurt in the tournament. Two concussions and a broken foot. I tried to get in as many kids as I could. We got what we wanted out of the tournament in terms of learning and experience. Winning was a bonus.”
De La Fe was impressed despite his team suffering its first loss. The Bear started three freshmen and five sophomores and had three senior starters out due to injury.
“I'm proud of how we played this week,” De La Fe said. “We had chances in this one and didn't finish. That's soccer.”
In the boys' third-place match. Liberty nipped Mesa High, 1-0. The final match of a three-team, double-round robin in the girls tourney. Campo Verde beat Casa Grande, 13-1. Basha was 4-0, Campo Verde 2-2 and Casa Grande 0-4.