Mission Oak defeated Hanford 2-0 and finished the preseason by winning 10 of their first 13 games
TULARE – Mission Oak earned their 10th win of the season with a victory over Hanford. They now head into league play with a 10-2-1 record.
The Hawks found the back of the net twice during the night, with the first goal coming in the first half. Seniors Litsy Munoz and Brianna Alvarez worked together for the point as Munoz sent the ball over the defense to Alvarez who scored on a chip shot. Hanford goal keeper Melody Martinez nearly had the save but the ball fell through her hands and into the goal.
Munoz would then go on to score her team’s second point in the 47th minute. Junior Gissel Mora sent the ball up the middle from the right side of the field, and Munoz did the rest as she pierced through the defense and scored on a fast break. Although she didn’t score this game, Mora has been a vital piece to Mission Oak’s strong start. She has over 20 goals this season after leading the team with 24 last year.
The Hawks are coming off a 2018 season where they defeated Golden West for the Division III valley championship. The team hasn’t had a losing season since 2010, and their sustained success has resulted in a promotion up to Division II.
In addition to playing in a higher division, the team will also be led by a new head coach, Mickie Reynaga. She’s been an assistant over the last four seasons and is more than ready to take on added responsibilities. Despite moving up a division, Reynaga is confident her team can continue their winning ways.
“Our opponents in Division II are teams that we have played before, some in preseason,” she said. “There’s no reason why we shouldn’t be up near the top.”
Beginning Thursday, Jan. 2, the Hawks will now play their league opponents for the rest of the way. Their first game is at Porterville, a team they were able to sweep in 2018.