By Stephanie Guevara
A redeemed men’s soccer saw its first 2-0 conference win against Pasadena City College on Friday at Weingart Stadium.
The Huskies had a slow start to the game, but managed to secure the win in the first half. East Los Angeles College sophomore forward Paulo Macedo-Nakashigue created plays, which woke the offense.
After a few failed shots on goal from ELAC and PCC, Husky freshman forward Paul Hernandez scored a header off a corner kick in minute 28. Hernandez entered the game minutes before he scored and helped the Huskies create more opportunities to score.
ELAC saw its best performance of the game after they scored. “It was a hard game, but we played together. They (PCC) were stronger and faster, but at the end of the day we came together as a team and we won,” Hernandez said.
In minute 44, Macedo-Nakashigue took the ball in the left wing where he sent a pass to Hernandez. Hernandez missed the shot, leaving the ball to sophomore forward Fabrizo Macia to score the second goal of the game.
Toward the end of the first half Macedo-Nakashigue, Hernandez and Macia became key attacking players. This frustrated PCC and made them play aggressively. PCC frustration was evident throughout the game, since they had difficulty getting past the defensive line.
“We were able to control the game, but we weren’t able to defend and they (ELAC) got the corner kick header. They took their opportunities and scored,” PCC head coach Gerry Mora said.
As the game progressed, ELAC’s defense strengthened, however, they still had a few defensive lapses. ELAC settled down in the second half and attacked less.
“We let the two goals get to our heads and we got comfortable. We realized the job wasn’t done yet and we had to finish it off,” Macia said.
PCC’s offense regained momentum and put the Huskies defense to work. PCC caught ELAC’s defense off guard on a counter attack where freshman forward Andres Velasquez received the ball in the goalkeeper’s area, but Husky freshman goalkeeper Oscar Ponce had an excellent save.
“We played well and we finally played collectively. It’s all about communication and listening as well and just throughout the game fixing the little things to move forward,” Ponce said.
PCC Velasquez received a red card after an aggressive foul where he kneed ELAC freshman defender Hugo Robert from the bad.
Although PCC remained with 10 men, Husky head coach Eddie Flores said the team felt comfortable and went back to bad habits that could’ve generated consequences.
“We go back to bad habits. We go up by two goals and we start missing goals. We start dribbling more than we have to and those are bad habits. I told them we had to stay consistent. Long Beach was similar to this team and we lost 1-0. We missed five on net,” Flores said.
Toward the last minutes of the game, Husky freshman forward Christian Galeana took a shot on goal where PCC freshman defender Edson Pulido barely touched the ball on the net line and prevented a third goal.
ELAC stands 1-1 in the South Coast conference and 4-8-2 overall.