Lake Tahoe CC men’s soccer falls short against Oxnard 1-0 in CCCAA semifinals
CUPERTINO, Calif. — The Lake Tahoe Community College men’s soccer team ended the 2015 campaign just short of its ultimate goal. The Coyotes had their season ended by Oxnard College (Calif.) 1-0 in the CCCAA state semifinals on Friday, Dec. 4, at De Anza College, bringing a stellar season to a close two wins shy of the championship.
In its first-ever appearance at the state championships, North second seed Lake Tahoe (18-5-2) lost in narrow fashion to a fellow first-time participant. South top seed Oxnard (18-4-3) scored the lone goal of the semifinal match in the 60th minute, a strike from Damian Lopez assisted by Fernando Hernandez Puga.
Oxnard went onto win its first championship in program history on Sunday, Dec. 6, beating North top seed Evergreen Valley College (San Jose, Calif.) 3-2 in overtime. Evergreen Valley beat Mt. San Antonio College (Walnut, Calif.) 2-1 to reach the championship.
In its second year, Lake Tahoe finished its season on the state’s biggest stage and made it two rounds further than in its inaugural campaign. The Coyotes finished ranked fifth in the final NSCAA Junior College Div. III national poll released Tuesday, Dec. 8, and made a deep postseason run after Nick Arbelalez took over as head coach late in the regular season.
LTCC won two Golden Valley Conference championships and went a combined 32-10-7 in its two seasons. Though the Coyotes ultimately ended short of the title, they laid the foundation for future success on the pitch with a memorable campaign.