Playing shorthanded the final nine minutes of the game, the Cerritos College men's soccer team surrendered a late goal and posted a 1-1 tie with visiting Taft College on Tuesday. The Falcons (3-2-3) had two of their players called off on red cards, while the ninth-ranked Cougars (5-1-1) had one player carded. They will all miss the next game, with Cerritos opening South Coast Conference play on September 30 against ECC Compton Center at Compton College.
Cerritos scored in the 10th minute to take an early lead, with both players involved in the scoring being the same who received red cards. Freshman Luis Garcia (La Habra HS) jumped on a loose ball and moved into the offensive zone. He sent a pass to sophomore Edwin Corona (Cathedral HS), who drilled a shot from the corner of the box and into the opposite side of the net past goalkeeper Ricky Montoy.
In the first half, the Falcons controlled the tempo of the game, but in the second half, it was more of a Taft offensive attack that kept Cerritos on their defensive heels. Corona received his first yellow card in the 15th minute and was carded again with a yellow in the 71st minute, forcing him to miss the remainder of the game.
On an offensive attack, Taft's Fabian Roman went up for a ball in the goal mouth and collided with Falcon goalkeeper Ivan Martin Del Campo (Granada Hills Kennedy HS). Extra contact on the ground warranted a red card against Roman, and the teams were playing at even strength six minutes after Cerritos went shorthanded. Just four minutes later, a hard tackle from behind earned Garcia a red-card in the 81st minute, which gave the Cougars a man-advantage once again.
Continuing their pressure, Taft received a direct kick at the top of the 18-yard box, where Christian Garcia scored into the upper corner past the outstretched hands of Martin Del Campo.
Both Martin Del Campo and Montoy each made three saves in the game. Falcon defenders Ivan Vazquez (Fullerton HS), Hector Jimenez (South East HS), Carlos Escobedo (South Gate HS) and Guy Julien (National Haitian Student Alliance) played well in a game that possessed a playoff atmosphere.
Photos by Daryl Peterson
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