A goal in the final minute of play allowed the visiting Pahrump Valley boys soccer team to escape town with a 2-2 draw against host Virgin Valley Thursday evening in the season opener at the Mesquite Sports and Events Complex.
The Soccer Dogs dominated during the first 40 minutes of play and held a 2-0 advantage at halftime on the strength two goals by sophomore forward Christian Martinez.
The tone quickly changed in the opening minute of the second half when the Trojans scored off of a VVHS turnover inside the 18-yard box that led to a goal cutting the Soccer Dogs’ margin to 2-1.
A few minutes later, the Soccer Dogs dodged a bullet when starting goalkeeper Hayden Johnson had to leave the pitch for a limited time following a yellow card. Jesus Perez came off the bench and recorded two crucial saves on consecutive corner kicks by the Trojans during his two minutes in goal.
Virgin Valley spent the next 20 minutes pushing for an elusive third goal. They had two excellent scoring chances but could not covert.
The best chance came when Carlos Campos drilled a shot from 15 yards that clanged off the near post and was cleared by a Pahrump Valley defender.
Minutes later, Martinez was sent in on goal but was denied by the Trojan keeper on a shot from just inside the 18-yard box.
Pahrump Valley picked up the pace the final 10 minutes in an effort to score the tying goal. After a couple of misfires, the Trojans were successful at the 79-minute mark when a shot from the top of the box went off the fingertips of a diving Johnson and then off the post and into the net.
The Soccer Dogs opened the scoring just four minutes into the contest when Martinez took a through ball from Angel DeSantiago and fired a shot on net. The Trojan keeper made the save, but left the rebound on the ground allowing Martinez to tap the ball into the net.
Virgin Valley increased the margin to 2-0 at the 16-minute mark when a shot by Martinez struck a Pahrump Valley defender in the leg and deflected past the Trojan keeper for a goal.
The Soccer Dogs, who outshot the Trojans 13-9 on the evening, will travel to Las Vegas Monday to face Eldorado at 3 p.m. They will return home the following day to host 4A power Palo Verde at 5 p.m. at the MSEC.