by Jennie McGhan
NACHES – Playing in the rain is never easy, but Mabton last night pulled out a slick one to defeat host Naches 5-2.
“We had a pretty good match,” said Coach Junior Garcia.
Viking Oscar Aguilar drew first blood in the 16th minute Thursday on his way to a hat trick.
But, the Rangers didn’t know the best was yet to come. Anthony Cuevas of Naches battled back to equalize the match a few minutes later. He didn’t settle for just the one goal, however.
Cuevas was eager to show Mabton which team had the advantage and scored another goal in a 20-minute window that opened for the Rangers.
Mabton closed that window in the 33rd minute, scoring three goals in just five minutes’ time.
Danny Cambron maneuvered the ball toward the Naches goal and delivered a pass to Aguilar, who capitalized on the opportunity to equalize the match once again.
It took just two minutes for the Vikings to take back the lead. Aguilar delivered the ball to Jose Andrade, who hit pay dirt to give Mabton a 3-2 lead.
In the 37th minute it was Aguilar who provided another assist, getting the ball to Cambron. He took advantage of the opportunity to put the ball away.
Mabton had a 4-2 lead at intermission.
The teams battled one another, in addition to the weather, throughout most of the closing half.
With just four minutes until the final whistle, Aguilar found the back of the net for the final goal of the match.
“We had a rough first half,” said Garcia, noting the teams were fighting for possession at every turn.
Mabton tallied a total of 15 shots on goal, 10 of those attempts were denied by Naches keeper Mario Juarez.
Viking keeper Juan Macedo recorded five saves in the opening half, and keeper Jose Camacho kept the ball from getting between the crossbars three times in the second half.
Mabton (4-5) will tomorrow (Saturday) travel to Connell.
‑ Jennie McGhan can be contacted at 509-837-4500, or email