Women’s Soccer Starts Season Strong

Mounties shutout their opponents in home opener


Forward Sasha Lopez quickly dribbles past Fullerton defenders to apply pressure in the second half (Photo courtesy of Eddie Ursua)

The Mounties hosted the Fullerton College Hornets on Aug. 30 in their home opener. After shutting out the American River Beavers, 4-0, on the road, the home team looked to carry on the momentum and start the season 2-0.

During the first kickoff, under the scorching sun and an evening breeze, the Mounties defended the first barrage of attempts by the Hornets. Consistent defensive pressure forced the Hornets into wide misses.

Six minutes into the game, an explosive offensive burst sparked by forward Sasha Lopez (3) as she weaved her way through two Hornets for a breakaway goal, 1-0.

The impenetrable Mountie defense was spearheaded by goalkeeper Leila Peregrina (1) as she logged two skillful saves in the first 16 minutes of action.

Fullerton pressed and attempted to apply offensive pressure, but to no avail thanks to the defensive approach by the Mounties. Much like their mascot, the Hornets kept buzzing around.

Minutes before the end of the first half, the Hornets had a one-on-one breakaway but could not cash in on the opportunity. Peregrina (1), doing her best Fort Knox impersonation, cut off the goal attempt with an excellent dive.

On the counter attack, midfielder Veronica Aquino (5) volleys a beautiful dime assist to forward Zuhayle Diaz (13) to double the Mounties lead on a powerful strike.

The Mounties lead 2-0 heading into halftime.

The weather may have started cooling off, but the Mountie offense was just heating up.

Forward Angeles Jacobo quickly cycles back to a defensive position in an unrelenting first half from the Mounties defensively (Photo courtesy of Eddie Ursua)

The Mounties switched from a smothering defensive clinic to an offensive eruption.

In desperation mode, the Hornets cranked up their intensity, resulting in a bruiser-on-bruiser style of play. The newfound aggression and physicality from the Hornets resulted in a collision had forward Sasha Lopez (3) down but not out.

At the 57 minute mark, mere minutes after Lopez went down, forward Kaylee Gutierrez (8) drove in for a quick goal.

3-0, Mounties.

The Mountie offense blitzed the Hornet defense throughout the second half. The Hornets could not clear the ball from the backfield for more than a minute before the Mounties intercepted and countered immediately.

The Hornets finally began to move offensively with extra passing only to see a well-timed defensive header from defender Ynelli Gonzales-Soriano (4) deflect the breakaway and put the Mounties back in control.

Forward Kaylee Guiterrez pushes the pace in the second half helping to keep the Mounties’ consistent offensive pressure up (Photo courtesy of Eddie Ursua).

An absolute textbook performance thus far resulted in Coach Sanchez clearing the benches. Eventually, tensions boiled over, leading to more shoving at the 80 minute mark and Fullerton yellow card from midfielder Emily Valencia (21).

Two more goals in the closeout minutes from forward/midfielder Karissa Vela (10) and midfielder Natalie Reyes (20) were the final straw that broke the Hornets’ back.

5-0, Mounties.

A great start to the season in a display of teamwork, athleticism and skill.

Don’t miss the women’s soccer team’s next match as they take on Lake Tahoe College at home in the Mt. SAC/Nike/Azteca Tournament on Friday, Aug. 31, at 5 p.m.