The Kingwood Park High School boys soccer team remained unbeaten and advanced to the area round of the UIL 4A playoffs on Friday night at Abshier Stadium, dominating Santa Fe 6-0 in a match marred by three red cards. Kingwood Park will face Houston Davis in the area round of the playoffs next week.
Kingwood Park, which reached the Region III-4A semifinals last year in its second year at the varsity level, controlled Friday's game from the outset despite the absence of Dynamo Academy forward Isaiah Noreiga, who was training with the Trinidad & Tobago U-17 national team.
Senior forward Juan Castillo made the Panthers' early pressure pay off, netting a natural hat trick in a 15-minute span. In the 11th minute, he created space with a great hesitation move at the top left corner of the box, then floated a shot in off the far post. In the 23rd minute, he reacted first to the knock-down of a long throw-in to make it a 2-0 game. He picked up the hat trick with an individual effort two minutes later when he stole the ball in midfield, beat the entire back line with one big touch, and coolly finished a breakaway.
In the second half, a classy left-footed strike from junior midfielder Zack Gibson and two headers from sophomore defender Derek Foster provided the final margin of 6-0. Santa Fe sophomore Brooks Reitmeyer performed admirably in goal while facing a barrage of shots, and he even saved a penalty kick in the 62nd minute. The game's physical play began to get out of hand, however, and tensions erupted in a the 64th minute with a few seconds of full-out fighting in the Santa Fe penalty area. One player from each team was ejected, joining an earlier red card, but the match finished without incident.
Other bi-district winners on the weekend included Port Neches-Groves, Nederland, Beaumont Central, Pearland Dawson, Houston Reagan, Houston Lee, Friendswood, Lamar Consolidated, Stafford, Alvin Manvel, Houston Austin, Houston Davis, Angleton, and Rosenberg Terry. All teams are hoping to reach the state tournament, to be held in Georgetown April 8-10. Brenham, one of four local teams to receive a bye to the area round, is the defending region champion.
The 4A girls soccer playoffs also got under way this weekend, while 5A action for both boys and girls kicks off with bi-district play on Monday and Tuesday at high schools throughout Texas.
UIL 4A boys soccer tournament
Region III - Area
Waller vs. Vidor/Hamshire-Fannett
Montgomery vs. Port Neches-Groves
Hunstville vs. Nederland
Brenham vs. Beaumont Central
Pearland Dawson vs. Houston Reagan
Friendswood vs. Houston Lee
Lamar Consolidated vs. Del Valle, March 23, 4 pm, Brenham High School
Stafford vs. Elgin
Alvin Manvel vs. Houston Austin
Kingwood Park vs. Houston Davis
Angleton vs. Taylor
Rosenberg Terry vs. Manor
UIL 5A boys soccer tournament
Region III - Bi-District
Katy vs. Alief Elsik, March 23, 7 pm, Tiger Stadium, Katy
Houston Westside vs. Aldine MacArthur
Atascocita vs. Houston Chavez
Strake Jesuit vs. Katy Seven Lakes, March 23, 8 pm, Strake Jesuit
Baytown Sterling vs. Pasadena Memorial
Brazoswood vs. Fort Bend Elkins, March 23, 7 pm, West Columbia High School
Fort Bend Hightower vs. Clear Lake, March 23, 7 pm, The Rig, Pearland
Pearland vs. Beaumont West Brook, March 22, 5:30 pm, Stallworth Stadium, Baytown
Alief Taylor vs. Katy Morton Ranch
Kingwood vs. Houston Sam Houston
Houston Bellaire vs. Aldine
Katy Cinco Ranch vs. Alief Hastings, March 23, TBA, Alief Auxiliary Field
Pasadena Dobie vs. Channelview
Fort Bend Clements vs. Clear Brook, March 23, 7 pm, Alvin High School
Clear Creek vs. Fort Bend Austin, March 23, 5 pm, The Rig, Pearland
Galena Park North Shore vs. Deer Park
UIL 5A boys soccer tournament
Region II - Bi-District (Greater Houston teams only)
Klein Oak vs. New Caney, March 23, 7:30 pm, Klein Oak High School
Georgetown vs. Langham Creek, March 23, 7 pm, Georgetown High School
Cy Woods vs. Round Rock, March 23, 6 pm, Berry Center, Cy-Fair ISD
The Woodlands vs. Klein Forest
The Woodlands College Park vs. Klein
Cy Falls vs. Cedar Park Vista Ridge, March 23, 8 pm, Brenham High School
Round Rock Westwood vs. Cy-Fair, March 23, 5:30 pm, Round Rock Sports Complex
Tomball vs. Conroe
Full brackets available from the University Interscholastic League.