TWIN FALLS — The Canyon Ridge High School boys soccer team led 2-0 at halftime, and it felt disappointed. The Riverhawks were so dominant in the first 40 minutes, they expected more to show for it.
They had no trouble finding the back of the net in the second half.
Canyon Ridge beat conference opponent Minico 7-0 Wednesday at Canyon Ridge High School. The blowout prolonged the Riverhawks’ strong start to the season, and it extended the Spartans’ losing streak to four games.
“We got a feel early on how the game was going to shape out,” Canyon Ridge coach Corey Farnsworth said. “First half was only 2-0. We finally, as a team, started doing the things we’ve been working on to finally put the ball in the back of the net.”
The Spartans have suffered some ugly seasons this decade, and Canyon Ridge had consistently made their record worse. Minico hasn’t defeated the Riverhawks since 2012.
But Minico didn’t go into Wednesday’s game expecting a drubbing. In their two regular-season matchups last season, the Riverhawks beat the Spartans 3-2 and 1-0.
On Wednesday, however, Canyon Ridge immediately looked like the better team. The ball was almost exclusively on Minico’s half of the field in the first half, in which the Riverhawks attempted 16 shots on goal, according to Farnsworth. Several shots were open, but only two found the back of the net.
In the 20th minute, freshman Michael de la Torre scored on a corner kick. About 15 minutes later, junior Rigo Garcia scored on rebound to cap the first half scoring.
“We just need to be more clinical on finishing,” Farnsworth said. “Some mistakes in the final third that we cleaned up, finally, in the second half.”
Garcia scored another goal in the second half. He didn’t even lead his team in goals scored by the time the game ended.
That’s because senior Sagar Bhattarai scored three goals in the final 40 minutes for his first hat trick of the season (third of his career).
“It feels good to score goals, but the win is the most important,” Bhattarai said. “Our goal is to get first in the conference.”
Senior Abdelgadir Mohamed scored early in the second half for Canyon Ridge’s fourth goal of the game.
The Riverhawks needed just 12 attempts to scored five goals in the final 40 minutes, according to Farnsworth.
“Second half we moved the ball more, communicated,” Garcia said. “At halftime, coach gave us a talk. Told us to play our game, possess, and we did just that.”
After beating a pair of nonconference opponents to begin the season, Minico has struggled. The Spartans lost a nonconference game to Bonneville 3-2, and they have dropped all three of their conference matchups. They fell to Burley 4-1 and to Jerome 6-0.
Minico was battling some injuries going into Wednesday’s game, according to coach Armando Tapia.
“All in all, Canyon Ridge moved the ball well. Got us kinda tired in the second half,” Tapia said. “Once Canyon Ridge starting passing the ball good, our offense and defense kinda fell apart.”
The Spartans (2-4, 0-3 Great Basin Conference) continue conference play on Wednesday at Wood River. The Riverhawks (3-1, 2-1) next play at cross-town rival Twin Falls the same day.