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Glendale High boys' shut out of playoffs by Corona del Mar

Soccer: Sea Kings gets early offense, Nitros never recover in 3-0 first-round playoff loss.

February 20, 2014|By Andrew J. Campa, andrew.campa@latimes.com
  • A Glendale High boys' soccer player hangs his head during a first round CIF Southern Section Division III playoff match at Corona del Mar on Thursday. The Nitros lost, 3-0. (Scott Smeltzer/Staff Photographer)
A Glendale High boys' soccer player hangs his head…

NEWPORT BEACH — While the position may have been familiar for the Glendale High boys’ soccer team, the Nitros’ opponent was certainly different, as was the final score.

For a second straight postseason contest, Glendale trailed early in allowing a second-minute score.

This time, however, there was no playoff magic or rally, as host Corona del Mar ended the Nitros’ season via 3-0 victory in the first round of the CIF Southern Section Division III playoffs on Thursday afternoon.

With the victory, the Pacific Coast League champion Sea Kings (15-3-4) advance to the divisional second round on Tuesday to face Anaheim or Kennedy.

As for Glendale, the Pacific League fourth-place entry capped a 1-1 postseason run with a 10-11-2 overall record.

“I don’t know if we had the confidence to play today and it looked like we had trouble concentrating,” Nitros senior midfielder Narbeh Shabani said. “We gave up another goal in the first two minutes and we didn’t play Corona del Mar well, especially against their long ball.”

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Glendale earned a berth to Thursday’s first round after pulling out a come-from-behind 3-2 overtime victory at Vista Murrieta (8-10-6) in Tuesday’s wild-card round.

In that contest, the Nitros fell behind 1-0 after two minutes, just as they did Thursday thanks to some hustle from Sea Kings senior striker James Kim.

Corona del Mar blitzed Glendale with four shots through the first two minutes, three coming on one possession that started with a blast from Sea Kings forward John O’Connor that diving Nitros goalie Ervin Vartoomian batted away.

The swatted ball bounced to Sea Kings senior Kyle Martin, who was also denied by a pouncing Vartoomian from close range.

Unfortunately for Glendale, the Nitros didn’t clear the ball out of the penalty area and an opportunistic Kim calmly tapped in a four-footer for the game-winner.

“We were a little fatigued from that overtime game, but that’s still no excuse,” Glendale Coach Artur Aghasyan said. “We lacked focus and concentration and unfortunately we didn’t play our game until after we gave up a goal.”

Corona del Mar outshot Glendale, 22-7, but the Nitros remained in the contest because of the exploits of Vartoomian, who finished with eight saves.

Vartoomian denied Corona del Mar’s Cameron Davis on a spinning reverse shot from 12 yards in the 39th minute to keep the score at 1-0 heading into halftime.

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