By Shannon Cole/Staff Writer
The women of City College’s soccer team secured their sixth straight conference win on Nov. 10 with a 3-1 victory over Evergreen Valley College, but it wasn’t as easy as it looked.
The Evergreen Valley College Hawks were a formidable opponent for the Rams on the field despite holding a 4-1-2 record in conference play, compared to the Rams’ substantially better 8-0-2 record.
Evergreen took to the field with an intensity and speed of play not usually seen by City College in anyone but themselves.
The Hawks scored first, sneaking one past goalkeeper Jade Fathollahi.
But soon to answer was City College freshman midfielder Marianna Aguirre, who tied the game 1-1 off a pass from fellow freshman midfielder Daniela Gutierrez.
“All I see is positive outcomes in the future for us. The chemistry is really strong between us, I feel like we can go all the way.
— Jazzlene Herrera
At halftime coach Gabe Saucedo reminded his players that the game was more than just a regular home game for them: the conference title was on the line. And with the Hawks sitting in second place right behind the first place Rams, Saucedo wasn’t going to let his team lose.
“You have 45 minutes left in your last home game of the season,” Saucedo said to his players. “You have to match their energy and then take it up a notch.”
That pep talk proved to be just what the Rams needed, cheering from the sidelines as they rushed the field to start the second half.
Scoring the go-ahead goal for the Rams was an unassisted attempt from sophomore forward Paloma Zermeno.
But the Rams saved the best goal for last.
In the final minutes of the half, freshman defender Jazzlene Herrera sent the ball soaring from far down the right side of field into the top left corner of the Evergreen net, shocking the Hawks goalkeeper as Rams players and supporters in the stands cheered.
The City College men’s soccer team, who had gathered to prepare for their own match, cheered the loudest. From their angle, they could tell it was going in the moment it left Herrera’s control.
Herrera was worried her shot wasn’t going in.
“I was thinking, ‘I better not kick it over’ but I was really surprised it went in,” she said.
After the game, coach Saucedo was more than happy to gush about the goal and his players.
“It gives us something to talk about. We’ll talk about it at practice, and we’ll show it on film again,” he said of the goal. “It will give her confidence going forward too.”
Not that the team needs it. From the sound of things, the Rams are more confident than ever as they head into the playoffs.
“I’m looking forward to making it all the way to the final four, I feel like this team really has it in them,” Herrera said. “All I see is positive outcomes in the future for us. The chemistry is really strong between us. I feel like we can go all the way. I’m really proud to be on this team.”
The Rams playoff pursuit begins on Nov. 21, against opponents yet to be determined.
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