CDO boys more than fancy passing - The Explorer: Sports

CDO boys more than fancy passing

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Wednesday, January 14, 2009 12:00 am | Updated: 1:25 pm, Mon Apr 18, 2011.

Heard in the Canyon Del Oro stands on Friday during the boys’ soccer team’s 13-0 victory over Cholla.

(Cholla Fan #1) — “Our team looks terrible, I mean look at how CDO passes, that’s incredible!”

(Cholla Fan #2) — “Stop being so negative all the time!”

(Cholla Fan #1) — “Well … I’m actually being positive. Because CDO plays beautifully, and I’m just saying it out loud.”

When a fan suspends allegiances and pauses to appreciate an opponent’s grasp of a game, it usually means one thing: the other team is pretty darn good.

The Arizona Interscholastic Association seems to agree. CDO’s Dorados are currently #1 statewide in the 4A-I division, boasting a 15-2 record with three regular season games left.

According to senior forward/midfielder Nick Marshall, the high ranking is “the last thing you want to get in your head.”

“We look at it from time to time, but especially in high school, in any sport, that can get in your head big time – you just want to focus on your team,” said Marshall.

Lack of focus has not been a problem for the Dorados. Marshall attributes the team’s attentiveness and ability to work together to about a decade of preparation.

“About seven of the players on this team have been together, in various club teams, since we were seven years old,” said Marshall. “We’ve always been just a really tight-knit unit.”

The team’s cohesiveness was brought home on Friday, when Marshall’s seven goals broke CDO’s single-game scoring record, and teammates seemed almost as excited as the shooter.

“He tore it up!” exclaimed senior goalkeeper / midfielder Eric Andrews.

Marshall is only one of the Dorados “tearing it up” this season.

Junior striker Donny Toia leads the 4A Sonoran division in assists with .71 per game and is second to Marshall in goals per game with 1.18. More offense comes from sophomore midfielder / halfback Ben Don and senior forward Jeff White, ranked fourth and fifth in goals per game. Underscoring the passing-oriented offense, Marshall, Toia, Andrews, senior defender Conner Muir and sophomore Caleb Christa rank #1-5 in assists.

The stingy Dorados defense has allowed 11 goals all season behind three senior goalkeepers – Andrews, Wes Baker, and Ryan Retz.

CDO travels to rival Catalina Foothills on Wednesday for a game that has little bearing on the playoffs or divisional race, but “is always huge, because we’ve known a lot of those guys for a long time,” according to Marshall.

Bragging rights aside, the Dorados are ready for state playoff redemption.

“State is a big thing for us, we were pretty disappointed last year losing in the semis,” said Marshall.

It is CDO’s plan that history will not repeat itself.

“Nine or 10 of our starters this year are seniors,” said Marshall. “This is our year to do it.”

Ironwood Ridge

If season schedules were mountains, Ironwood Ridge’s December and January would be Everest.

Beginning Dec. 18 with current 5A-II #1 Rincon and ending Jan. 9 with 5A-I #1 Salpointe Catholic, every team the Nighthawks faced was ranked in Arizona’s top five.

The result: a 3-1-1 start has become a 4-7-2 record. And the upcoming weeks are not much easier. Games with #4 Tucson High, #5 Mountain View, #6 Sunnyside and #9 Buena will test Ironwood Ridge’s ability to overcome adversity.

The Nighthawks will count heavily on juniors Kodiac Gamble and Nigel Heisse and sophomore Garrett Reidhead to stimulate an offense that has scored 19 goals on the season, and on junior goalkeeper Ben Ambrosio to stifle opponent’s scoring opportunities.


The last three years have been tough for the Marana Tigers. The Tigers have amassed four wins in three seasons, including their Dec. 5 victory over Rio Rico this year.

Despite difficulties on offense, forwards Nick Parker and Spencer Laulusa have shown some sparks for a 1-6-1 Tigers team that has scored five goals in eight games. The Marana defense is headed  by goalkeeper Nate Prather, who has proven stingy at times, saving nine shots in a close Dec. 4 loss to rival Mountain View.

Mountain View

Home is where the heart, and the wins are. At least that is how the 2008/’09 Mountain Lions seem to feel. Mountain View is 5-0 at home this season. The road has been another type of challenge for the Mountain Lions, and one they have not had an answer for, going 0-4-1. The strength of Mountain View’s schedule has allowed them, despite some lopsided losses, to gain a #5 5A-II ranking. Nick Teppe, Michael Psund and Nick Peap have been at the helm of the Mountain Lions scoring drives, and goalkeeper Paul Kerr has, at times, been able to shut opposing shooters down.

Pusch Ridge

Last season, Pusch Ridge went 13-6-1 and made it to the state playoffs, before a first-round loss ended their season. This season’s Lions look like they are on a similar course.

Pusch Ridge is 10-2 and currently perched atop the 2A Central division standings. The Lions’ offense has been prolific, outscoring opponents 49-12 on the season. Juniors Mitch Woody and Matt Horrigan, sophomore Geoff Pooley and senior captain Casey Vick have all been explosive shooting in the goal box. Vick, in particular, has been virtually unstoppable, scoring multiple goals on various occasions, including three in a Dec. 6 victory over Tanque Verde. Senior keeper Daniel Vavrusa has been the keystone of the Lions defensive efforts, leading Pusch Ridge to five shutouts so far.

© 2014 The Explorer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Welcome to the discussion.

Kino College

Kino CollegeEnroll today:

HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 16

Boys Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Buena, Cienega at Marana

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge, Catalina at Amphi (Silverbell GC)

Catalina Foothills, Pueblo, Sahuarita at Sahuaro

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Rio Rico

Ironwood Ridge at Glendale Ironwood

Swimming (@4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge, Sahuarita at Desert Christian

Wednesday, September 17

Girls Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Rincon at CDO

Ironwood Ridge, Desert View at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Cross Country (@4:30)

Salpointe at Catalina Foothills

Palo Verde, Nogales at Marana

Rincon, St. Gregory at CDO

Sahuarita, Pueblo, Pusch Ridge at Desert View

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Empire at Marana (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

CDO at Queen Creek

Cienega at Mountain View

Sahuaro at Catalina Foothills

Walden Grove at Pusch Ridge

Thursday, September 18

Girls Golf

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Boys Golf

Sahuaro and Salpointe at Ironwood Ridge

CDO, Rincon, Sunnyside at Tucson High

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at Sahuarita

Ironwood Ridge at Sahuaro (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

Catalina Foothills at Rincon

Pusch Ridge at San Manuel

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Marana vs. Tucson at Quincy Douglas Pool

Cienega at Marana

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Amphi

Catalina Foothills at Sahuaro

Freshman Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Flowing Wells at Marana (4 p.m.)

Desert View at Mountain View

Cienega at CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

JV Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Amphi at Marana

Santa Cruz Valley at Pusch Ridge

Mountain View at Desert View

CDO at Cienega

Buena at Ironwood Ridge

Sahuarita at Catalina Foothills

Friday, September 19

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge at Mt. Carmel Invitational (San Diego, CA)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

Football (@7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Santa Cruz Valley

Catalina at Marana

Desert Vista at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Cienega at CDO

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

Saturday, September 20

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Marana at Old Pueblo Invite(Lincoln Park)

Mountain View at San Diego

Catalina Foothills, CDO at Ojo Rojo (Chandler, AZ)


Marana at Wolves Classic (Chandler High)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions


MOS: Storms and Floods

We asked the community about the coming floods and storms.

MOS: Back To School

We asked the community about the new school semester starting.

More Featured Videos

Follow us on Facebook