On their way to their fifth straight CCCAA State Championship in 2016, the Cerritos College women's soccer team saw their 50-match unbeaten streak come to an end with a loss to Fresno City College. On Wednesday afternoon, the Falcons had their 54-match home field unbeaten streak (52-0-2) snapped by the Rams in a 3-2 non-conference loss. It was the first home setback for Cerritos (4-1-1) since a 2-1 loss to Long Beach City College in 2012. The team will host Ventura College at 4:00 p.m. game on Sunday, with the Falcons honoring the school's first state championship team from 2007 with a 1:30 p.m. alumni vs. alumni game.
Fresno City (8-0-0), who entered the week ranked #7 in the nation by the United Soccer Coaches Association, scored twice in the first six minutes of the game to take an immediate advantage. Cerritos, ranked #1 in the same poll, playing without several starters due to injury, finally got their footing in the final 15 minutes of the first half and had several good scoring chances. Once they were able to string together a few passes and get deep in Rams territory, their shots were either wide, deflected or went over the crossbar. Fresno City got on the board in the fourth minute when Jasmine Garibay dribbled around three defenders and scored against freshman goalkeeper Andrea Diaz (Cerritos HS), who was playing in favor of injured Deisy Rodriguez (Katella HS). The team also played without injured starting defender Sophie Saouma (Esperanza HS), while several other starters came off the bench.
It was a 2-0 deficit for the Falcons in the sixth minute, as the Rams Ariana Rodriguez cleaned up a scramble in front of the net and chipped the ball into an open corner of the net.
Cerritos got on the board late in the first half when freshman Mia Ramirez (Torrance HS) gathered a loose ball, made two quick moves and drilled a line drive over goalkeeper Riana Castaneda and just under the crossbar in the 43rd minute. It was the first goal allowed by Fresno City all season.
Looking to ride the momentum of a strong latter part of the first half, the Falcons found themselves down 3-1 when Sophia Zertuche scored on a give-and-go from Riana Wristed in the 49th minute. In extra time, freshman Brianna Yepez (Paramount HS) scored on a header off a corner kick from Ramirez. It was the lone corner kick of the game for Cerritos.
Photos by Daryl Peterson
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