“This gives us a good place in WAC because we have beat pretty much beat all the other teams besides Liberal,” senior forward Juan Carlos Rodriguez said. “Dodge has lost other games so it puts us like No. 1 right now.”
Both teams knew coming into this game things would get physical. Garden City was the first to come out firing and was quick to pull the trigger. A cross shot during the 18th minute of the first half lands a header by Buffalo forward David Amaro. As the ball angled past the Demon goalie senior midifielder Joel Sanchez solidified it.
“Well it wasn’t really my goal,” Sanchez said. “It was my friend David’s goal. I just headed it in to make sure it went it.”
The Buffaloes headed into halftime ahead 1-0 and the second half began with a dominant Buffalo presence. Within the first five minutes a corner kick connected with Amaro to give the Buffs a two goal lead. Garden City head coach Joaquin Padilla said he thought his team got too comfortable following this goal.
“We needed to start pressuring right at the beginning and I thought we did that,” Padilla said. “We wanted to get on the board as soon as we could because that also takes a little pressure off of us. Once we got there we relaxed maybe too much and allowed them to control the ball in the last 10-12 minutes. But before that I thought we did a good job of controlling them. At the end I think we moved the ball well.”
The Demons came back with a vengeance and focused on the physical aspect of the game. A penalty kick opportunity for Dodge City was blocked but finished in the back of the net by Demon forward Hector Navarro. It put the Demons on the board but that was their only chance at redemption. The Buffs regrouped and drove the pitch. Buff midfielder David Fuentes took the ball all the way, catapulting his kick into the near side of the net.
Garden City finished the game ahead 3-1. Not only was it the second win against Dodge City this season and a big rivalry win, but also it put the Buffs at the top of the WAC.
“This is really important to us because Dodge has been beating us for a couple years back and it feels good beating them at their house and here at home as well,” Rodriguez said.
“This year we were able to beat them here and beat them there,” Padilla said. “I don’t know if it was luck or maybe we have a better team this year than they do.”