Boys soccer: Nava notches another hat trick, leads Elgin to regional title
Another 3 goals for Eduardo Nava, another step forward for Elgin.
Nava notched his second straight hat trick Saturday as the Maroons downed Streamwood, 5-1, to win their own Class 3A regional.
Elgin faces Rockford Jefferson at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday in a Huntley sectional semifinal.
The win was extra special for the Maroons because they were able to secure it on their home turf at Memorial Field.
"It's the first time it's happened to me," Nava said. "I'm pretty excited. Now onto another one."
Streamwood struck early when Michael Garcia headed in a long pass 10 minutes in.
"It took a little bit of the wind out of our sails," said Elgin coach Dave Borg. "The first 7, 8 games of the season, that would have been it. We would have been done. Growth is the biggest most important thing out here, and these guys have really grown up."
Nava got it back quickly. Alan Sanchez's cross hit Nava in full stride and he headed it in to knot the score.
Two minutes before halftime, Nava's second goal gave the Maroons the lead for good. Nava came in on a breakaway, faked left, then took a low shot toward the right side of the net.
Edgar Perez extended the lead shortly after halftime when he pounced on a loose ball right in front of the net.
Nava completed the hat trick when he rebounded Olamipo Ajayi's shot with 16 minutes left.
Isaac Espinosa added an insurance goal about 5 minutes later.
Borg reflected on what the regional title means after the struggles of the past 18 months.
"It's special, especially after the last year and a half," he said. "Last year was kind of a broken-up season, and coming out this year and growing as a team the way we did ... I'll be honest, the first 7 games of the season, we didn't know if this was going to be a real possibility, but we grew. It's nice to give this to Elgin High School."
Garcia nearly got a second goal when he blew past the defense and came in all alone, but Elgin keeper Jahir Ruiz came out to break it up before Garcia could get off a shot.
Gonzalo Taboada had a couple of chances for the Sabres, with a free kick that Ruiz saved off the crossbar and another that just missed wide left in the second half.