Mario Cortes, Taft senior midfielder, races past Pleasant Hill senior defender Ian Vanderlip on Tuesday afternoon at Voris Field in Lincoln City. Despite Cortes’ two-goal effort, the Tigers dropped their season-opening match, 3-2.

LINCOLN CITY — Despite dropping its season-opening match Tuesday afternoon in a 3-2 non-league 3A/2A/1A loss to Pleasant Hill at Voris Field, the Taft boys soccer team managed to impress head coach Ryan Ulicni with its play during the course of the final 40 minutes.

Two first half tallies less than 10 minutes apart from Billies senior midfielder/forward Adrian Arellano, and a third goal late in the first half off the boot of freshman Landen Melvin forced the 3A/2A/1A-SD 2 Tigers to enter the second stanza with a two-goal deficit. And despite Taft and sophomore keeper JJ McCormick holding Pleasant Hill scoreless the remainder of the match, and senior midfielder Mario Cortes’ second goal of the afternoon, a converted penalty kick, the Tigers couldn’t score an equalizer before the final whistle.

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