With two losses and a draw in its previous three games, the College Park High boys soccer team knew it needed wins to reach the North Coast Section Division I playoffs.
The Falcons on Friday looked like a team that understood that time was of the essence, beating host Alhambra 3-1 in a nonleague game.
College Park scored late in the first half and early in the second half to take a 2-0 lead, then held off a spirited Alhambra side to improve to 5-5-6 overall with six games left in the regular season.
The Falcons are also 3-2-2 in the Diablo Valley Athletic League and would need to be at least .500 overall against teams in their league to become eligible for the playoffs.
"It was definitely much needed, and it was a tough one because Alhambra played hard," College Park coach Edgar Sagastume said. "Our passing was fantastic. We really connected well tonight."
Andre Garcia played a hand in all three goals, scoring the first for the Falcons in the 31st minute, then sending a smooth pass through the box that Joey Brauer was able to finish in the 51st minute.
His second goal, a penalty in the 80th minute, put away the game.
The Bulldogs (8-6-3), ranked No. 14 in the East Bay, answered just three minutes after Brauer's goal, as Jesus Maldonado scored his 17th of the season.
But Alhambra was down to 10 men for the final 25 minutes and wound up conceding the penalty just seconds after Maldonado appeared to have deserved a penalty kick.
A proposal for competitive equity adjustments in NCS boys and girls basketball playoffs starting next year was met with resistance at the section's Board of Managers meeting in El Cerrito.
By a 26-20 vote, the item was tabled. It will be sent back to the NCS Sports Advisory Committee, section commissioner Gil Lemmon said. Now, Lemmon said, even if it is approved, "I don't see how it will be implemented by next year."
The proposed competitive equity adjustments were based on a five-year period of competition in the NCS basketball championships.
Any team required to move up to the next highest division could be moved back to the next lower division if it did not proceed to the championship round for three consecutive years.
Among the boys teams that were slated to move were Newark Memorial to Division I, Bishop O'Dowd to Division II and Salesian to Division III. Girls teams proposed to move included Carondelet to Division I, Bishop O'Dowd to Division II and St. Mary's to Division III.
"It turns Division I into an open division," West Alameda County Conference commissioner Dave Kiesel said. "If we are going to have an open division, let's have a real open division."
Kiesel said that the 12 principals in the WACC unanimously opposed the proposal.
There was little discussion regarding a proposed revision to California Interscholastic Federation Bylaw 600.
The revision would remove the restriction on participating on non-high school teams during the high school season of the same sport.
Amy McNamara, an NCS delegate to the CIF Executive Committee, said the proposal, "did not go over so well" at the CIF Federated Council meeting in October and believed it was "close to dead."
The CIF Federated Council is expected to vote on the proposed revision May 2.
-- Phil Jensen