Frander Marroquin’s timing couldn’t have been better for the Pittsburg soccer team.
The senior netted his 30th career goal — breaking the previous record for the Purple Dragon soccer team — on Tuesday afternoon against the Columbus Titans on the pitch at the Pittsburg Soccer Complex against the Columbus Titans. PHS won the match 15-0 in a game that ended after the first half because of the mercy rule.
“(Marroquin) is extremely excited for the record,” said Pittsburg head coach Sean Lauderdale. “He’s a blessed young man. He has the skill to get in that kind of position. It’s great for him to have the record heading into regionals.”
Marroquin had five goals total for the night.
“Its amazing,” Marroquin said of the record. “I will remember it for the remainder of my life. I’m really happy for it. My teammates helped me out.”
Marroquin scored in the seventh, 10th, 20th, 22nd and 29th minutes of the game.
The Purple Dragons came out firing on all cylinders, scoring four goals within the first 10 minutes of play.
It was nearly 5-0 before Columbus blocked Carlos Calderon’s shot from the right side of the box.
Pittsburg eventually made it 5-0 after Jamie Maldonado scored from a short distance away.
“We’re happy with the victory, Lauderdale said. “Any time that we can force balls into the back of the net, we’re happy about it. It helps us get some touches around the team and set us up for regionals.”
A brilliant header attempt by Calderon from a cross was successfully blocked by the Titans and a few seconds later, Columbus had another save from a close range on a shot by Abraham Chavez.
Pittsburg added a sixth goal in the 14th minute by Maldonado after scoring from the left side of the net.
A flick by Trevin Jameson in the 15th minute made it a 7-0 advantage for Pittsburg., who continued to control possession throughout the first half.
“We want to move the ball around,” Lauderdale said. “We knew that Columbus was going to be really hungry for the ball, so we had to keep and have them force us to pass it.”
A cross from the right side of the box by Emmanual Garcia was met by the head of Marroquin for a shot that went over the cross bar in the 16th minute.
Marroquin danced around the Columbus defense before taking an open shot in to the far right corner of the net in the 19th minute to make it 8-0.
David Barrientas-Garcia’s shot went wide left of the net by only a matter of inches before the 22nd minutes.
A ninth goal was added in the 21st minute and Columbus had yet to register a single shot on target.
The Purple Dragons would add six more goals before the end of the game while working in a number of substitute players. PHS was also able to make a few changes to positions before the end of the game as well.
“It’s good for us because it works out really well for us to get the players a chance to see what it’s like to be in a different position,” Lauderdale said.
PHS improved to 13-2 for the year and will close out the regular season on the road against Independence on Thursday.
After that, Purple Dragons will now turn their attention to regionals.
“The biggest thing that we need to sharpen up is our speed,” Lauderdale said. “Our passing and moving and how we play to resolve an attack is big. We’re going to be facing teams that are pretty fast in regionals.”
Michael Bauer is a sports reporter for the Pittsburg Morning Sun. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on twitter at @michaeljohn391.