Valhalla junior goalkeeper Febronio “Dimas” Orozco blocks the penalty kick that allowed the Norsemen to defeat Hilltop in the first round of the San Diego Section Division II playoffs. Valhalla prevailed 3-2 on PKs after a 1-1 tie in regulation.
CHULA VISTA Sandwiched between the goal posts, Valhalla goalkeeper Febronio “Dimas” Orozco stared his opponent directly in the eyes.
“That instant, I knew exactly where he was going,” Orozco said.
Hilltop’s Rigoberto Marciel struck the soccer ball. Without hesitation, the Norseman junior dived — hands fully stretched — to the right.
The save propelled Valhalla (12-7-6) past Hilltop (9-8-6) in a penalty kick shootout (3-2), earning the Norsemen a date with top-seeded Mt. Carmel in the San Diego Section Division II quarterfinals Saturday.
“Fantastic. A fine save,” Valhalla coach Brad Baughan said of Orozco’s match-sealing deflection.
“It was ironic seeing the two goalkeepers standing side by side, the other goalie having a foot on him. But Dimas reads the game so well and he is quick like a cat.”
It appeared Valhalla’s season would end yet again against the Lancers at Robert Dodds Stadium — like last season — after Steven Jaramillo netted a goal two minutes into the match, but the Norsemen rallied.
Senior midfielder Andrew Ogilvy scored an injury-time equalizer just before halftime. The ball bounced to his feet around a pile of defenders and he smashed it in.
Forty minutes later, the game remained 1-1, sending the match into a 15-minute golden-goal period that produced a handful of saves from both keepers.
“We didn’t want to make mistakes in the back,” Baughan said.
Both teams missed their initial PKs, standing 2-2 after six kicks. Valhalla capitalized on the ensuing kick. Hilltop didn’t.
“A slip of a foot or an overpowering kick happens sometimes,” said Lancers coach John Salts. “It just didn’t go our way. Our guys normally hit 10 out of 10 in practice, but hats off to Valhalla.”
Orozco summed up this match in three words.
“Revenge,” he said smiling. “Sweet revenge.”