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Heat Socks Midland

Heat Socks Midland

Heat defeats Sockers 5-1

By Adam Geigerman
Laredo Morning Times

The Laredo Heat Soccer Club started slow but quickly bubbled into a boil on Wednesday at the Texas A&M International Soccer Complex.

The Heat defeated the Midland-Odessa Sockers FC 5-1 in their first game in 10 days.

Local flavor spiced the night as United alumnus and former Dustdevils striker Daniel Garza blitzed the Sockers with a first-half brace.

He scored Laredo’s second and third goals in its most productive half of the season.

In six previous games – including an international friendly versus the Nuevo Laredo Bravos and two Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup matches – the Heat had not scored more than two goals in a game. On Wednesday, they took only 45 minutes to surpass that.

The Sockers struck first, in the 10th minute, off a corner kick.

The crossball cascaded to the ground, where David Gonzalez collected it for a right-footed slotting past Laredo’s Emmanuel Frias.

After a pair of heartbreaking losses in its previous two matches – including a penalty-kick dagger in the Open Cup’s second round against the North American Soccer League’s Fort Lauderdale Strikers – the Heat righted their ship just four minutes later.

Brazilian newcomer Joao Monteiro – an incoming freshman at San Jacinto – flashed his footwork for the equalizer off his right foot.

He received the ball around midfield on a Laredo counter attack after a cleared Midland-Odessa corner kick, gliding inside the Sockers’ 18-yard box before firing inside the far post.

He earned his brace in the 60th minute with another right-footed burial.

Garza doubled Laredo’s lead in the 29th minute with a right-footed, spinning strike.

It was his second goal that drew gasps from the Heat supporters; he volleyed an 18-yard missile off a poorly cleared Laredo corner kick in the 45th minute.

The Heat entered halftime leading 3-1, but increased their lead with two more goals in the second half’s first 15 minutes.

In the 58th minute, former University of the Incarnate Word and San Antonio Scorpions striker Ljubomir Kocic bullied his way through the Sockers’ backline to blast his first Premier Development League goal of the season.

Two minutes later, Monteiro doubled his tally for the night – and the season – with his teasing technical ability.

The Heat’s five goals were more than their combined total through their first three league games – Laredo scored one at Houston, two in its first victory over Midland-Odessa and was shutout at Austin.

Laredo next plays Oklahoma City FC on Saturday in Oklahoma City at 8 p.m.