Coming on the heels of a key win against a division opponent, Peninsula's men were set up for a letdown at No. 3-ranked Walla Walla on Saturday afternoon.
So much for that.
Daniel Gonzalez found the net just two minutes in and added two scores in the second half of a 4-1 win on Oct. 6, pushing the No. 1-ranked Pirates' winning streak to 11 games and keeping their conference record unblemished at 6-0.
"This was a big game; we had to play at their place (and) it is not a very easy place to win," Peninsula coach Andrew Chapman said. "Our guys did all the right things. We scored early and forced them to change their formation."
Alex Martinez made it 2-0 with a score at 24 minutes and that's the way it stayed until halftime.
Martinez found Gonzalez for another score about 10 minutes into the second half.
Warrior Kyle Menchaca broke up the shutout two minutes later, but Gonzalez responded with his third goal a minute after that for the game's final score.
Topping the Titans
A bigger school, to be sure, but not unbeatable.
Tacoma's Titans proved unable to keep up with the top-ranked Pirates last week as Martinez and Henrique Noujeimi peppered the Titans' goal in a 6-0 P.C. shutout on Oct. 3.
Martinez paced the offense with scores at 15, 32 and 55 minutes — his second hat trick in as many games — and Noujeimi added a score in each half as Peninsula shut out a conference opponent for the ninth time this season.
The Pirates got assists from six different players, including Gonzalez, Aaron Jeffery, Richard Gallarde, Jake Forrester and Braiden Gundlach.
Guilherme Avelar had 12 saves to record the shutout.
"It was great to get this result against a West Division opponent," Chapman said. "This win helps put us in front of the other teams in our division. Guilherme had a great game in goal for us. (He) made some very big saves late in the game."
The Pirates host Olympic today, Oct. 10 — game time is 4 p.m.
Peninsula is on the road after that, playing at Wenatchee on Oct. 13 and at Bellevue on Oct. 17 before hosting Highline on Oct. 20.
Gonzalez named Player of the Week
Peninsula sophomore midfielder Daniel Gonzalez was named NWAACC Men’s Soccer Player of the Week after scoring the game-winning goal against four-year school Trinity Lutheran on Sept. 26.
Gonzalez had a goal and two assists in the 4-1 Peninsula victory.