News: Season Revived For Men's Soccer, Upset 4-Time State Champ Mt. SAC, 5-2
Trailing 2-0 late in the first half Tuesday, the Pasadena City College men's soccer team appeared on its way to a second straight South Coast Conference loss at Robinson Stadium. With four-time defending CCCAA state champion Mt. San Antonio holding the advantage, the Lancers were even more behind the eight ball.
Instead it was the current No. 7-ranked Mounties that were left behind, trampled by a runaway eight wheeler as PCC scored five unanswered goals for an improbable 5-2 victory. The PCC women's basketball team rooted the Lancers on with cheers and chants from the stadium stands as the soccer team completed its rally.
At one point being outshot, 11-1, the Lancers fortunes changed when Zack Larson received a lead pass from Luis Flores and knocked in a roller into the corner of the net just a few seconds before the first-half whistle. The goal cut the Mt. SAC lead to 2-1.
Flores, who sat the first 20 minutes of the game in nursing a back injury, sparked the team's offense in the second half. In the 58th minute, Flores blasted in a free kick from 27 yards out for his team-leading seventh goal, tying it at 2-2.
With PCC gaining all of the momentum, the rally continued when Larson's throw-in from the sideline got through a maze of players with Eric Chavez directing the bouncing ball in for a 3-2 lead. In the 89th minute, Chavez received a lead pass by Flores, raced over a fallen Mt. SAC defender and kicked in his second goal. The Lancers capped the scoring fountain in injury time as again it was Flores setting up a breakaway goal for Midya Housepian.
Lancers' goalie Gaetano Perez made seven saves but received outstanding defense in the second half by Mario Monroy, who twice blocked Mt. SAC opportunities near the goalie box. Monroy, Max Rico, and George Barba were strong in the backfield, preventing the Mounties to mount much of an offense in the second half. Mt. SAC was limited to four shots in the second half.
Flores finished with a goal and three assists in a brilliant playmaking display.
"That late goal at the end of the first half gave us hope," said PCC head coach Edgar Manvelyan. "We attacked Mt. SAC's back line and put the pressure high and it worked. We brought in Barba and Max Rico off the bench and it gave us more attack from the back. Once we got ahead, it made more sense to just stay on the offensive. We sat back in a match v. them last year and it cost us."
Manvelyan was referring to a 2-2 tie in last year's matchup at PCC when Mt. SAC scored a goal in the 90th minute that prevented a win that could have helped the Lancers make the postseason.
Now, the Lancers are 3-1-1 in the SCC (4-3-5 overall), currently in third place in the 9-team league. Mt. SAC fell to 7-2-3 and 3-2 in conference games, dropping to fourth.
On Friday, PCC visits first-place Cerritos (5-0 in conference) for a 4 p.m. match. Cerritos has 15 team points, Harbor 12, and the Lancers 10 in the current conference standings.
[Photo--Lancer Eric Chavez gets by a fallen Mt. SAC defender on his way to scoring one of his two goals in PCC's win Tuesday at Robinson Stadium, image by Richard Quinton, sports information photographer.]
Release Date: 10/15/2013