Women’s soccer stays optimistic after tie

By Dan Gudino

The women’s soccer team finished in a 1-1 tie at home yesterday against Mount San Antonio College.

East Los Angeles College struggled in the second half, allowing a soft touch, slow rolling goal in the 49th minute from Mt. SAC’s freshman forward Viviana Ortega to tie the game.

ELAC’s lone goal came in the 40th minute of the first half after the Huskies took a hard foul at midfield. A set pass from midfield flew into the middle of the box and caromed off several players and right in front of sophomore Colleen Tamashiro, who lightly tapped the ball over the head of the goalie.

Sophomore goalie Penelope Roman played an excellent game for the Huskies, using her athleticism and quick hands to fend off the Mt. SAC attack.

Right before the end of the first half, in the 41st minute, Roman punched the the ball out of box to give the Huskies a 1-0 lead into the half.

The highlight of the day for the Huskies came from Roman. In the closing four minutes Mt. SAC’s Ortega dribbled through the ELAC defense, fired high on goal from about 20 yards, and Roman jumped straight up to use her left fist to punch the ball behind goal to preserve the tie.

“I didn’t think it was going to go over the net until the last second, then I landed hard right on my back and saw it behind me. This game came down to hard work. I think if we had all our players, we would have done way better,” Roman said.

The Huskies’ struggles in the second half could be credited to a red card given in the 55th minute, when ELAC’s sophomore Miriam Bibian was pulled from her jersey. Bibian defended herself by throwing a high right elbow that missed the Mt. SAC player, but the intention behind it caused the referee to pull out the red card.

Down to 10 players, ELAC played conservative in the last 35 minutes, focusing on defense and had no shots on goal.

At the start of the second half, on the sideline, the Mt. SAC men’s soccer head coach Juan Sanchez notified its women’s head coach Melinda Bowen that ELAC might be in violation for using an illegal non-sponsored ball.

The California Community College Athletic Association is in contractual agreement with ball maker, Wilson.

When its was mentioned to coach Bowen, she instantly said from the sideline they could win the game by forfeit.

The Mt. SAC sideline instantly looked relaxed and got comfortable. It did not pick up its attack until Sanchez got off the phone with his athletic director and found out ELAC was within its rights of not using a Wilson brand ball.

The rule of strictly using CCCAA official sponsored Wilson balls will not take effect until next season. Until then, all home teams are allowed to use their ball brand of choice.

The Huskies found the positive in the tie by acknowledging the match as the third straight game without a loss. ELAC has carried a losing record all season, winning one game.

The tie puts ELAC at 1-8-3. They will play at home on Friday against El Camino College at 2 p.m.

“Mt. SAC played a great game, but I wouldn’t rank them with the quality of teams we’ve played. The playoffs are still within reach for us because of the points system. We actually gained points by playing some of the tougher teams early in the season,” ELAC head coach Tessa Troglia said.

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