M. Soccer: Win secures unbeaten regular season

The Cerritos men's soccer team celebrates their second straight divisional title
The Cerritos men's soccer team celebrates their second straight divisional title

For the first time in school history, the Cerritos College men's soccer team has gone through the regular season with an unbeaten record. The Falcons (16-0-5, 6-0-2) capped off their second straight South Coast Conference South Division championship with a 2-1 home win over Long Beach City College on Saturday. The game was rescheduled from October 10 when a local fire made the air unhealthy to play.

Seeding for the Southern California Regional Playoffs will take place on Tuesday and Cerritos will be seeded #1 and receive a bye in the first round. They will open the post-season on Tuesday, November 21 against the winner of the #8-seed vs. #9-seed game, which will take place on Saturday, November 18. The Falcons are ranked #1 in the nation by the United Soccer Coaches among Division III (non-scholarship) schools, while they are also ranked #1 in the state and Southern California.

The Vikings struck first against Cerritos in the 11th minute on a goal from Steven Espinoza, but the lead didn't last long. In the 19th minute, sophomore Luis Garcia (La Habra HS) did what he does best, control the ball and create scoring opportunities. He took on a pair of Long Beach City defenders, which opened a a space for sophomore Oscar Canela (Paramount HS), and he tied the game with his seventh goal of the season.

After allowing the early first half goal, the Falcon defense clamped down and limited the Vikings to just three more shots on goal, which all came in the first half. The second half was controlled mostly by Cerritos, who kept working for more scoring chances. What turned out to be the game-winning chance came with three minutes left in the game. Working the ball on the edge, sophomore Adrian Becerra (Morningside HS) was able to make a turn deep in LBCC territory and found Canela, who posted his second two-goal game in the last three matches.

Photos by Daryl Peterson