M. Soccer: Pair of second half goals propels Falcons

Bryan Ortega scored the game-winning goal against Cuyamaca
Bryan Ortega scored the game-winning goal against Cuyamaca

Trailing 2-1 in the second half of the Southern California Regional Playoff game, the Cerritos College men's soccer team scored two second half goals within five minutes to pull out a 3-2 win over Cuyamaca College. The Falcons (16-2-4), seeded #2 for the playoffs, will host #7-seeded Golden West College at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday. Last season, Cerritos defeated the Rustlers in the CCCAA State Championship game.

The win also extended the Falcons home unbeaten streak to 37 games (32-0-5), while they are now 10-0-2 in their last 12 home playoff games.

The Falcons opened the scoring in the first half when sophomore David Lermas (Paramount HS/Compton College) scored off a corner kick from Bryan Ortega (Paramount HS) in the 25th minute. The Coyotes, who lost the Cerritos, 6-2 earlier in the season, and 3-0 in the first round of the playoffs last season, scored the next two goals of the game to take a 2-1 lead.

After the second Coyotes goal in the 61st minute, Cerritos was able to regroup and scored twice within five minutes to take a lead they would not relinquish. In the 67th minute, sophomore Bryan Villalobos (Salesian HS) fed a pass through the Cuyamaca defense to sophomore Kevin Diaz (Connections Academy HS), who found himself in a one-on-one situation with goalkeeper Christopher Westover. Diaz was able to beat Westover for his 16th goal of the season, which ties him with Ortega for the team lead.

Just five minutes later, Villalobos scored what would be the game-winning goal when he chipped in a shot from inside the 18-yard box. It was the fifth goal of the year for Villalobos. The Cerritos defense was able to hold off Cuyamaca the rest of the way.

Photos by Daryl Peterson