Perez scored his first goal just over six minutes into the game from 35 yards out on a shot that floated over the keeper to put the No. 5 Trojans (6-3-1, 3-0 Region 5-AAAA) up 1-0. Less than three minutes later, Perez connected on his second. This time the Trojan tri-captain found a rebound of Jonathan Rucker's shot off Kevin Sosa's corner kick for the 2-0 lead.
"Those two early ones, it looked early that it was going to be a lot bigger score. Abel found the net twice early and that was good because after that we had a little trouble finding the net. Those were two big goals, especially from a defender. Anytime you can get a defender in and score, it's a good thing," Carrollton coach Scott New said.
Even though Carrollton would control the game for almost its entirety, it never was able to score any more and put the game out of reach.
"I thought we kept the ball most of the time. I think it was 21 shots to four. Shots got to go in. I thought LaGrange had a decent game plan, they were going to put a lot of people behind and make it tough for us to score. We were able to get a lot of numbers in to the attack, we just weren't able to finish. That happens sometimes. We've just got to take care of the opportunities we create," New said.
LaGrange (3-6-1, 1-2) would take advantage with just under 10 minutes remaining before the break, as James Hutton scored from the right corner of the box, cutting the Carrollton lead to 2-1. The second half would provide plenty of chances for the Trojans, but no more goals were scored and the game ended with the same score.
Even though the result may not have been as big as the two early goals might have suggested, a win in region play is what counts this time of year.
"Sometimes if you can't finish, you lose those games. So it's good to get the result again in a region game to stay undefeated," New said. "That's the most important thing. A pretty win and an ugly win still count as a win."
The Trojans won't have to wait long for their next region battle, as they travel to Fayette County on Thursday for a 7:30 p.m. matchup with the new 5-AAAA foe. The Carrollton coach expects a good effort, but knows his team will have to score if it wants to win.
"We'll get ready [today] for Fayette County, another important region game on Thursday," New said. "I've seen them play for about a half. They're another team that's going to work hard, they're going to give us their best shot. If we do what we're supposed to, we should be able to control the game. We've got to finish our chances. You never know when that happens."