Lady Warrior senior Bryanda Leon kicks the ball around two St. Michael’s players during their 1–0 win at home on Saturday.
Caitie Ihrig | El Defensor Chieftain


After a heartbreaking 4–1 loss in the 3A state championship in April, the Socorro Lady Warriors soccer team defeated the St. Michael’s Lady Horsemen 1–0 in their home opener on Saturday.

“It’s a great feeling to play in front of home fans against a hard team,” Socorro sophomore Faith Lucero said. “At state, we had people there, but to play on your home field and you’re home in front of all of your friends and your family. It’s just a good feeling, especially to win it.”

Socorro head coach Michael Olguin said he had a hard time sleeping the night before because he was excited about the game and knew how much playing St. Michael’s means to the Lady Warriors.

Socorro senior Lola Apodaca (11) and sophomore Marae Angel (30) hug sophomore Faith Lucero (4) after Saturday’s game. Lucero scored the Lady Warriors’ only goal.

“This is one of the games we circle on our schedule,” he said. “We knew it was going to be a rematch from the state championship in April. They are a top tier, top caliber in our class and it’s more than likely one of the teams we are going to face in the state tournament. The girls know what they need to do and how to beat a good team like this and they did it today.”

Lucero, who scored Socorro’s only goal on Saturday also scored the Lady Warriors’ state championship goal.

“We played them in state and to score on them again, it just felt like this year is it and we can do it this year,” she said.

Lucero’s goal came at the 25-minute mark in the second half from inside of the penalty box on the right side of the field to the bottom left corner of the net.

“It was a rush of feelings,” she said. “It was the greatest feeling at that moment. It just gave me a lot more confidence in the game and that just boosted all of us up, I think.”

Throughout the game, the Lady Warriors were focusing mainly on defensive play, especially after going ahead by one.

“We made sure we were being a little bit more defensive to protect that lead,” Olguin said. “We are just trying to balance everything out from playing back forward, back forward and keeping everything balanced.”

Olguin said the Lady Warriors played smart and were aggressive throughout the whole game but that they need to work on their passing a little more and making sure they finish the plays.

“We will keep working hard,” he said. “We still have a long way to go for the rest of the season.”

The Lady Warriors start a three-game homestand with Rehoboth Christian at noon on Saturday, September 11 at the Socorro Rodeo and Sports Complex