By ARMANDO GARZA
Special to the NEWS
SAN BENITO — In what’s become one of the more competitive soccer events in the area, the annual San Benito Dog Pound tournament on Jan. 23-24 once again did not disappoint.
Games were played at three sites, including Bobby Morrow Stadium, San Benito High School and Old Greyhound Stadium with 16 teams entered in all.
In the end, first-year school Sharyland Pioneer claimed the tournament crown with a 4-0 victory over Mission Veterans, which finished as the runner-up. Silver Bracket championship honors went to La Joya Palmview 1, Edinburg Vela took the Bronze bracket and Valley View captured the remaining bracket.
Overall, it was a good weekend for the host-Lady ’Hounds went 2-1 in pool play. On Friday, the girls battled eventual runner up Mission Vets to a 0-0 draw, but loss in penalty kicks. San Benito fnished pool play strong with a 1-0 win over Rio Grande City, thanks to a netter coming from Gloria Hernandez, as well as a 3-0 shutout of Port Isabel with Hernandez booting two more goals while Adriana Moreno added one of her own.
The girls were second in the pool with 7 total points losing the pool round to Mission Veterans, which won the pool with 8 total points.
San Benito advanced to the silver bracket and defeated Roma in the silver semifinals. The game ended in a 1-1 draw from a regulation goal from Hernandez, while penalty takers were Paola Fuentes, Hernandez and Carmen Aguilar, as the Lady Hounds prevailed in PKs.
In the Silver bracket final, the Lady ’Hounds faced La Joya Juarez-Lincoln and fell in a 1-0 nailbiter. San Benito finished with a flurry of scoring chances, including a beautiful cross chance from Hernandez to set up Morenop during the match’s final 20 seconds. Moreno’s header attempt cleared just over the crossbar and bounced away empty.
The tourney served as the final warmup for the girls as they ready to enter what’s expected to be an ultra-competitive District 32-6A race.
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