Although they allowed their first goal of the season, the Cerritos College men's soccer team scored three second half goals to post a 3-1 win on Friday. Playing at El Camino College in their first South Coast Conference South Division game, the Falcons (6-0-3) surrendered a first half goal, but scored twice in three minutes in the second half and then added a late goal to secure the victory. On Tuesday, the team will host EC-Compton Center at 2:00 p.m. in another divisional game.
In the 27th minute, the Warriors Jason Santana did something no other player had done against Cerritos all season. He was able head a pass into the far corner of the goal against freshman goalkeeper Jordan Aldama (North Torrance HS), and the Falcons were trailing in a game for the first time this year.
"We told our team at halftime that being down brings out the character in a team," said head coach Benny Artiaga. "We just weren't hungry enough in the first half and El Camino was beating us to the 50/50 balls. I think we thought we could just walk all over them, but conference is a different animal and we got tested."
In spite of the goal, Cerritos continued to dominate possession of the ball and took shots whenever available. They finished with 23 shots, with seven of them on goal against El Camino's Cesar Amezcua. They finally tied the game in the 55th minute when sophomore Luis Garcia (La Habra HS) played a great set peice from 30 yards out toward the goal. He placed it perfectly for sophomore Guy Carven (National Haitian Student Alliance), who headed the ball into the net, which seemed to relax the team after tieing the game.
Less than three minutes later, Garcia picked up his fifth goal of the season when a counterattack pass from sophomore defender Jose Rivera (Torrance HS) sent him in on a breakaway against Amezcua. Rivera received the ball off an El Camino corner kick, which had the defense up close on the play. The gifted Garcia went in from midfield, which allotted him time to pick his spot and the Falcons a 2-1 lead. Continuing their offensive pressure, Garcia sent a corner kick to the far post, where Rivera was there to head the ball in after a rebound from Amezcua.
Aldama (4-0-3) was asked to make just one save on the day, while Garcia led the team with nine shots, while Carven posted four. Each of them had one on goal, but they each played a huge role in the team's win.
"They responded well from the first minute of the second half and we took control of the game," added Artiaga.
Photo courtesy of El Camino Sports Information
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