Stephanie Esparza plays the ball here during PCC’s loss v. Chaffey Tuesday at Robinson Stadium, photo by Richard Quinton. The Pasadena City College women’s soccer team is one win away of from clinching a better-than-.500 season, something the program hasn’t achieved in four years. But a Jekyl & Hyde season it’s been for the Lancers. […]
Stephanie Esparza plays the ball here during PCC’s loss v. Chaffey Tuesday at Robinson Stadium, photo by Richard Quinton.
The Pasadena City College women’s soccer team is one win away of from clinching a better-than-.500 season, something the program hasn’t achieved in four years. But a Jekyl & Hyde season it’s been for the Lancers.
The Lancers (8-6-3 overall) are in a couple of winless streaks of late, one being the inability to win at their home field–Robinson Stadium. State No. 10 Chaffey handed PCC its worst defeat of the season Tuesday, 5-1, after No. 4-rated Cerritos downed the Lancers, 3-0, on October 27 in consecutive home games. Pasadena hasn’t won at home since August and has an 0-4-3 record in the last seven contests on its narrow Robinson turf surface. That is a complete contrast to the team’s sparkling 6-2 overall road record.
Another issue for PCC is the South Coast Conference North Division, a league created when the SCC split into two divisions last year with the addition of current state No. 5-ranked Rio Hondo and Chaffey to the conference. The Lancers are stuck in a 13-game winless streak in conference play (0-11-2) including a 0-4-1 mark this season. PCC has the distinction being the lowest-RPI team with a better-than-.500 record in the state at No. 59 (30th in the region).
“We have a dilemma of being good enough to beat a lot of teams outside the SCC North but really facing two superior type programs inside the division,” said PCC head coach Reggie Rivas. “We had a great start of the year, but just can’t buy victories in conference. We’ve had some injury setbacks, but we also haven’t played as well as we need to against the better SCC teams. We’re trying to fight through this with a few games left in the season.”
Against Chaffey, the Lancers fell behind less than two minutes into the game, but tied it at 1-1 on a Stephanie Esparza goal that was tapped in on a long free kick by Alexxis Molinar in the 33rd minute. The Panthers though took the lead for good right before halftime when Raelene Diaz headed in a free kick by Taylor Windham. The second half was all Chaffey was PCC as the Panthers scored three times in a span of less than 10 minutes.
In the Cerritos loss, PCC played kick-for-kick with the 5-time defending state champions as the game was scorless for the first 70 minutes. Brianna Aguilar nearly gave the Lancers a lead in the 21st minute but her breakaway attempt from 15 yards just went wide of the far post. The Falcons scored what proved to be the game-winner in the 71st minute when Jennifer Lopez took a free kick from the 21-yard line and drove a shot that tipped off the finger tips of leaping PCC goalie Lilly Urumieh into the upper net.
On Friday, Nov. 3, the Lancers hope to gain their first conference win since 2015 when they travel to face East Los Angeles College. Game time is 4 p.m. following the men’s game. PCC played to a 1-1 tie v. the Huskies in their first matchup at Robinson Stadium on October 3.