Seven weeks ago, the Aragon High School girls’ soccer team walked off the pitch at San Mateo High School following a 1-0 loss to the Bearcats that dropped the Dons to 0-2-2 in league play.
The Peninsula Athletic League Bay Division title seemed out of reach, making the playoffs was in jeopardy and Aragon’s players were starting to point the finger of blame at any target they could find.
Back to the present and the Dons are 14-2-5 overall. Aragon rode a 10-0-1 streak to the PAL Bay title, earned the top seed in the Central Coast Section Division II playoffs and a picked up a 2-0 opening-round win over Los Altos last week. Aragon will look to extend its incredible run today at 7 p.m. against No. 4 St. Ignatius at Pioneer High School with the winner advancing to the section title game on Saturday against either Los Gatos or Mitty.
"I give a lot of credit to our three captains," Dons coach Will Colglazier said. "Kat McAuliffe and Rachel [Killigrew] and Nicole Killigrew were instrumental in rallying our team after that loss to San Mateo."
Aragon’s amazing turnaround began the next day at practice Colglazier decided to keep the practice a fun one to remind the team that the game is supposed to be fun. Each practice afterward seemed more focused, according to Colglazier.
So did the Dons’ defense, which has yielded only four goals in the past 11 games and has eight shutouts. Shutout No. 7 came during the last league game, a 4-0 win against Terra Nova that moved the Dons past San Mateo for the title. Colglazier figures his defense will have to come up big once again tonight against St. Ignatius.
"It’s a tough matchup for us," Colglazier said, "But I feel very confident going in that we’ll have a strong game."
Four other county teams will be looking to advance to a section title game today and Wednesday. No. 7 Woodside (13-6-2) plays No. 3 Mountain View on Wednesday at Valley Christian High School at 7 p.m. in Division I play. The winner faces either Santa Teresa or St. Francis on Saturday for the section title.
In Division III, Sacred Heart Prep (14-4-3) plays No. 2 Live Oak today at 7 p.m. at Valley Christian. The winner faces either Woodside Priory or Valley Christian for the section title on Saturday.
In the boys’ divisions, No. 1 Burlingame (16-3-2) battles No. 4 Mitty at 4:30 p.m. today at Gilroy High School in Division II. The winner faces either Willow Glen or Pajaro Valley on Saturday for the championship.
In Division I, No. 3 Menlo-Atherton (14-3-2) plays No. 2 Mountain View today at Piedmont Hills High at 7 p.m.
A look at San Mateo County soccer teams playing in Central Coast Section semifinals games this week:
Boys’ Division I: Menlo-Atherton vs. Mountain View at Piedmont Hills High School, 7 p.m.
Boys’ Division II: Mitty vs. Burlingame at Gilroy High School, 4:30 p.m.
Girls’ Division II: St. Ignatius vs. Aragon at Pioneer High School, 7 p.m.
Girls’ Division III: Sacred Heart Prep vs. Live Oak at Valley Christian High School, 7 p.m.
Girls’ Division I: Woodside vs. Mountain View at Valley Christian High School, 7 p.m.