M. Soccer: Early goal doesn't slow down Falcons

Marc Calderon assisted on the game-winning goal against El Camino
Marc Calderon assisted on the game-winning goal against El Camino

A week ago, the Cerritos College men's soccer team was playing in 100+ degree temperatures. On Tuesday in their South Coast Conference South Division game, the Falcons (14-0-3, 4-0-0) started off as cold as the 67-degree temps against El Camino College. Although they trailed 1-0 after 11 minutes, the team started to heat up and scored the next three goals for a 3-1 victory. The nation's top-ranked team will travel to Compton College for a 2:00 p.m. divisional game on Friday.

Cerritos tied the game at 1-1 in the 23rd minute when freshman Luis Lira (La Puente HS) was fouled in the box by the Warriors (6-9-4, 0-4-1) Reyes Jaimes, which resulted in a penalty kick. Sophomore Guy Carven (National Haitian Student Alliance) stepped up and converted the kick, his third goal of the season. El Camino scored their goal after freshman goalkeeper Jordan Aldama (North Torrance HS) made consecutive saves on shots by Rene Escobar and Jason Santana, but the second rebound went to Gregory Natt, who chipped the ball into the net.

Looking to maintain the tempo of the game, the Falcons kept putting shots on goal at El Camino goalkeeper Hector Gutierrez, who came up with 10 saves, including a couple of great scoring attempts in both halves by the Falcons. Cerritos took the lead in the 63rd minute on a great three-way play that resulted in a one-timer by freshman Christian Perez (Paramount HS). Lira got the play started on a long pass across the field to sophomore Marc Calderon (Elizabeth Learning Center HS), who was guarded in the box. He spotted Perez on the opposite side of the penalty box and sent a pass before the ball hit the ground, which was directed into the net for the eighth goal of the season by Perez.

Not to be outdone by a great-looking goal, sophomore Luis Garcia (La Habra HS) capped off the scoring in the 84th minute when he placed a beautiful free kick from 35 yards out under the crossbar and over the outstretched handed of Gutierrez. It was the team-leading 14th goal for Garcia.

After surrendering the early goal, Aldama went on to keep El Camino off the scoreboard the remainder of the game with three saves and earned his 11th win of the season.

Photos by Daryl Peterson