WALNUT CREEK -- Already with a loss and two ties, the Dublin High boys soccer team faces an uphill battle if it wants to win the Diablo Foothill Athletic League crown this season. But that's not going to prevent the Gaels from keeping chase.
Playing like a team looking to prove a point, Dublin beat host Las Lomas 3-1 on Wednesday night to keep pace with first-place Campolindo.
Campolindo beat Miramonte to stay five points clear of Dublin, which, with the win over Las Lomas, vaulted into a second-place tie with Alhambra.
More importantly for the Gaels, at this point, is winning to assure itself one of the top seeds for the North Coast Section Division II playoffs.
"For us, getting a higher seed in NCS is more important," Dublin coach James Fulwiler said. "We have an uphill battle with Campo and we'd need help from other teams. Our NCS seed is something we can control."
Dublin (12-1-3, 3-1-2 DFAL) did what it needed to do Wednesday, scoring early to set the pace and never letting the Knights (5-6-1, 1-4-1) get into a rhythm.
Yiannis Kournoutas scored twice in the first half, once in the third minute and again in the 34th minute. Darion Carino headed home a 64th minute goal to put the match out of reach.
Las Lomas possessed and moved the ball well at times, but once in the attacking third, the Gaels back line -- led by Zach Schmidt and Cory Stewart -- was enough of a disrupting force to not allow many clear chances.
The Knights ruined the Gaels' clean sheet with Jake Casey's cool finish in the 77th minute.
Dublin, on the other hand, enjoyed quite a bit of possession and had many chances, but six saves by Knights goalie Jason Gendron kept the game relatively close.
Kournoutas' second goal was the result of some fine possession as Suliman Khorami made a great pass to Sam Gebremiche, who was able to beat his man to the corner. Gebremiche then sent a perfect ball into the six-yard area, where Kournoutas was waiting to capitalize.
His first goal was the result of a deflection that found its way to him, as his right-footed shot found the back of the net.