With a record of 5-1 (15 points) in District 32-6A, the Harlingen South Lady Hawks have had to contend with not only opponents, but themselves.
Due to a string of injuries, Harlingen South head coach Omar Pedroza has yet to field a consistent starting 11 this season. With players like Stephanie Torres, Alex Cavazos and Clarissa Miranda out, Pedroza has had to get creative with the game day lineups.
“It’s been tough because we’ve put kids in there that have done a good job, but the chemistry between them has yet to form,” said Pedroza. “When you have so many kids out, it takes a while for them to get used to playing well together. But we’re doing well and we’re hanging in there.”
In fact, Pedroza saw an encouraging sign in the team’s 5-1 victory over Weslaco East on Tuesday. It was the first time the Lady Hawks had defeated any opponent by that wide a margin and he hopes it’s indicative of what’s to come.
“I’ve been blessed because we have kids with really good talent and are young,” said Pedroza. “I think the main thing for us is that we need to keep them playing together long enough. If I can keep 11 players together for a while, then I think we’re going to be OK.”
Currently the Los Fresnos Lady Falcons sit atop the District 32-6A standings with a record of 6-0 (18 points), South is second and Harlingen High is third at 4-2 (12 points). Both BrownsvilleRivera and Brownsville Hanna are 3-3 (nine points), Weslaco East is 2-4 (6 points), San Benito is 1-5 (three points) and Weslaco High rounds out the girls standing at 0-6 (zero points).
HAWKS HAVE FINALLY FOUND THEIR GROVE: With 10 goals scored in the past three games, the Harlingen South Hawks have finally found what they’ve been missing — goals.
The Hawks defeated Weslaco 3-0, Weslaco East 3-0 and Weslaco East 4-2.
“We had been having a hard time scoring goals. We’ve created a lot of chances but goals had come few and far between,” said Harlingen South boys soccer head coach Julian Robles. “The kids have been working hard in practice and putting in the effort and that shows. If they concentrate on what they’re doing and dedicate themselves on what they are doing, it helps out a lot because the kids have to put in the work. These goals are a direct translation of what the kids have been doing.”
And due to the positive showings, Harlingen South has been turning some heads.
“Our program has been coming around and we’re finally getting some respect from the other teams in the Valley,” said Robles. “No game has been easy, but when the kids play with confidence, it’s huge.”
Part of that confidence boost has been credited to the team’s ability to find the back of the net. Robert Rodriguez has 17 goals on the season and teammate Jose Lerma has scored four goals in the past three games.
The Hawks sit in fourth place with a District 32-6A record of 4-2 (12 points). Meanwhile, Los Fresnos, BrownsvilleRivera and Brownsville Hanna are all tied for first place at 5-1, however the Falcons have 16 points, Rivera has 15 points and Hanna has 14.
Just below the Hawks is Weslaco East at 2-4 (six points), San Benito 2-4 (five points), Harlingen High 1-5 (three points) and Weslaco High at 0-6 (zero points).