M. Soccer: Defensive effort accompanies offensive support in win

Carlos Payeras (14) scored a couple of second half goals to lead the Falcons
Carlos Payeras (14) scored a couple of second half goals to lead the Falcons

Led by another shutout performance by the defense, the Cerritos College men's soccer team exploded for three second half goals in a 4-0 win over visiting Citrus College on Tuesday. The clean scoresheet was the second in as many games for the Falcons (2-0-0), who have outscored their first two opponents, 11-0. The team will now head north to compete in the Hartnell Tournament over the weekend.

The game started as a tight defensive effort by both teams, with the Falcons withstanding an early scoring attempt by the Owls (0-2-0). In the third minute, Patrick Luevano was able to get past the Cerritos defense and get off a clean shot that hit the far post and deflected wide. That seemed to wake up Cerritos, who clamped down on defense and went on to limit Citrus to just one shot on goal the remainder of the game. It would by the only other shot the Owls would get off against sophomore goalkeeper Hernan Perez (Pioneer HS), who posted the shutout.

In the 15th minute of the game, sophomore Luis Garcia (La Habra HS) displayed his accuracy with the ball, as his free kick was sent perfectly to freshman Esteban Camacho (Mayfair HS), who headed the ball into the net for the first goal of the game. Camacho had come on just five minutes prior in favor of sophomore Guy Carven (National Haitian Student Alliance), who came out due to an injury. Carven would return and play exceptionally in the middle and helped control the tempo of the game with his ball control.

In the second half, freshman Carlos Payeras (Lennox Academy HS) gave the team a three-goal cushion in the span of five minutes, netting his first two goals of the season. His first came in the 59th minute when he was in the right place at the right time. With the Falcons threatening, freshman Bryan Rodriguez (St. John Bosco HS) got the play started with a couple of nice moves to get deep into Citrus territory. His initial shot was turned away, with sophomore Hector Jimenez (South East HS) getting off a rebound shot. That was also turned away by goalkeeper Christian Arevalo. But his save hit Payeras square in the body and redirected into the net. His second goal came five minutes later when Rodriguez bounced a pass in the direction of Payeras, who hammered the high bounce into the net for a goal.

Cerritos closed out the scoring in the 85th minute when freshman Alberto Carrillo (Lynwood HS) stole the ball and quickly turned into an attack position, where he fed sophomore Oscar Canela (Paramount HS). Receiving the ball with precision, Canela dribbled once and fired a shot that went under the arm of Arevalo.

The Falcons saw a couple of other missed chances go awry, as freshman Christian Perez (Paramount HS) had a pair of solid looks at the net, while Payeras missed out on his third goal when his shot went just over the crossbar.

Photos by Daryl Peterson