LAS VEGAS, N.M. — The Portales Rams got a bit of a lift Monday as they try to earn a state Class 1A-3A playoff berth.
Senior Brandon Gomez and sophomore Christian Martinez each scored a pair of goals as the Rams defeated Las Vegas Robertson 5-2 in non-district play.
The Rams (7-9) close the season with Ditrict 2/1A-3A matches in Santa Fe against Monte del Sol on Friday and Desert Academy on Saturday. At 3-5 in the district, coach Nathan Dodge said he thinks his team might need a sweep to earn a state berth, with pairings to be announced on Sunday.
Robertson took the girls matchup 2-0 as junior forward Caitlin Diefendort, the leading scorer in Class 1A-3A, tallied her 34th and 35th goals of the season in the first half for the Lady Cardinals.
Gomez scored both of his goals and added an assist as the Rams took a 3-2 halftime lead. Jose Barron made it 2-2 with a goal in the 36th minute, and Gomez got the go-ahead tally about two minutes later.
Sophomore Christian Martinez added two insurance goals, coming about a minute apart, midway through the second half.
Senior Brandon Trujillo had both goals for the Cardinals (2-13).
“The kids played well,” Dodge said. “The field was kinf of hard; the ball bounces hard on it, and it was hard to settle the ball.”
He said the team picked up its play after halftime.
“We didn’t play that well in the first half, but we played better in the second,” Dodge said. “Hopefully, it’ll give us some confidence for this weekend.
In the girls contest, Diefendorf struck in the eighth minute and again in the 15th minute, and the Lady Cardinals (13-5) made it stand up as sophomore goalkeeper Nicky Litherland had five saves en route to the shutout.
“We played hard,” Lady Rams coach Amber Garcia said. “We were a little disorganized at the beginning, but we got reorganized and were able to put some pressure on them.
“We had some good shots. They just didn’t go it.”
The Lady Rams also play Monte del Sol and Desert Academy in Santa Fe this weekend.