Sockers Clinch Pacific Division Title With 10-3 Win
The 14-Time champion San Diego Sockers (13-3) clinched their second consecutive MASL Pacific Division title with a 10-3 win over the Tacoma Stars on Friday night. Kraig Chiles had a hat-trick, and Brandon Escoto, Brian Farber, and Erick Tovar paced San Diego with two goals each. Luan Oliveira also found the back of the net.
San Diego's win combined with Ontario's 10-8 loss to El Paso secured the top spot in the division. The Sockers will host game two of the home-and-home Divisional Championship Series on Saturday, May 10 at Valley View Casino Center.
San Diego sprinted out to a 5-0 second-period lead on two goals by Farber, and one from Tovar, Escoto, and Chiles. Tacoma's Taylor Walter Bond, who had two markers, scored their first goal with 1:19 left before the half. Chiles countered the Stars goal one minute later to give San Diego a 6-1 halftime lead.
San Diego kept the pressure on and added two quick tallies from Oliveira and Tovar to begin the third period to up their advantage to 8-1. Tacoma (8-10) notched a power-play goal with five minutes remaining in third and then promptly went to the sixth-attacker for almost a full quarter.
Goalkeeper Boris Pardo was solid in goal making six saves for his seventh game of the season.
Playoff tickets for the Divisional Championship Series will go on sale beginning February 25.
San Diego plays Sonora on Sunday, February 11, 5:05 p.m. at Valley View Casino Center. The match will feature the annual Alumni Halftime Game, and it is also Sockers Car Book Drive Night. Fans who donate five new or gently-used books before the game receives a free ticket voucher for the February 24th game.