La JUNTA, Colo. – The Western Nebraska Community College men’s and women’s soccer team opened Region IX South play with a split of matches against Otero Junior College in La Junta, Colorado, on Friday.
The Cougar women opened the day falling 2-0 to the Rattlers. The Cougar men followed with a thrilling and hard-fought 2-1 win over Otero Friday night.
The Otero men started the scoring with a goal in the 20th minute of the first half for a quick 1-0 lead. WNCC kept fighting as they knotted the score in the 41st minute when Silvio Xavier delivered a pass to Ramses Athaulpa for the score. The teams entered intermission tied at 1-1.
The second half was a back and forth affair and it wasn’t until the 75th minute that the Cougars would get an opportunity for the go-ahead goal. That was when freshman Jens Van De Woude punched the ball into the back of the net off a penalty kick for the lead.
Coming down the stretch in the final two minute, Otero had a flurry of shots to tie things up, but WNCC”s defense and play of goal keeper Leandro Faria, who made a couple big saves to preserve the win.
Otero outshot the Cougar 14-10 on the night. The Rattlers had nine shots on goal compared to five for the Cougars.
Faria had eight saves in net for the Cougars.
The Cougar women played a tough contest but couldn’t get the ball in the back of the net in falling to the Rattlers 2-0. Otero scored first just 15 minutes into the contest with a goal by Ally Hammer.
That is where the score stood until the final three minutes of the match when Otero struck again on a goal by Stormi Garcia.
Both teams had nine shots. Otero had seven shots on goal while WNCC had four shots on goal. Caroline Vieira had two shots on goal, while Rafaela Passos, Perla Guzman, and Jordyn Rivera each had one shot on goal.
Laramie Lake had six saves in net.
Both Cougar teams will be back in action Saturday afternoon when they travel to face Trinidad State Junior College in Region IX South action.