Perry boys’ soccer squad punched their ticket to the 2017-2018 state tournament in Des Moines after defeating the Harlan Cyclones, 3-1, in the Class 2A Substate 8 final.


The Bluejays (3-0), were in Harlan on Saturday, May 26, for a showdown against a Cyclones (1-1) team that lost only three games all season.


“Harlan came out fast and furious and threw just about everything they had at us,” head coach Gary Overla said. “I thought the kids played really well.”


The team’s three goals came from three different players, juniors Anthony Velasco and Sarceno Rivera and sophomore Alamina.


Both Velasco and Rivera recorded their goals on penalty kicks with Alamina scoring during the game’s tempo.


“I felt that Cori Alamina had a real good game coming off of the bench for us providing a much needed fresh set of legs,” Overla said. “He ended up with a goal and an assist.”


The head coach also singled out a specific player. Senior Mickey Velasco provided a much needed spark for the team at a time during the game that, according to Overla, the Cyclones seemed to be in control.


“Mikey responded in a positive manner and held the line and I think his teammates responded in kind,” Overla said. “He was sort of a rallying point for us during that point in the game when we could have gone the other way but he didn’t allow and he led his team back, the kids seemed to rally around his effort and then that effort started to spread.”


After the half, the Bluejays took control of the game and they were able to get goals when they needed them, said the head coach.


It’s back-to-back state appearance for the Bluejays. They head to the state tournament on Thursday, May 31 for a matchup against the number one seeded Pella Dutch.


“We’d like to thank all those that traveled to Harlan to support us and we would appreciate your support against Pella in the first round at the State Tournament,” Overla said.


The Class 2A first round is set to take place at the James C. Cownie Soccer Complex Field in Des Moines. Game time is 2:30 p.m.