Sanchez’s late goal lifts Lake Tahoe CC women’s soccer to season-saving 1-1 tie against Butte
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE — The Lake Tahoe Community College women’s soccer team kept its long-term objectives in tact with a dramatic 1-1 draw against Butte College on Friday, Oct. 21. The way the Coyotes see it, the result saved their season.
Freshman Victoria Sanchez scored the game-tying goal in the 86th minute Friday as Lake Tahoe rallied for a critical tie. The Coyotes trailed for most of the Golden Valley Conference match, and appeared headed toward a detrimental defeat before pulling even.
“It was just passion,” Sanchez said. “We worked so hard this season and we didn’t want to throw it away.”
Lake Tahoe (7-4-4, 4-1-2 GVC) fell behind eight minutes into Friday’s match, and was clearly stunned by the early goal. Emma Obray pounced on a rebound after an initial save from Coyotes sophomore Alicia Rea, and Butte (7-5-1, 4-2-1) went in front.
“The season was effectively over if we didn’t find a way to get a result,” Coyotes coach Jeremy Evans said.
The Coyotes settled in midway through the first half, but couldn’t find the back of the net and trailed at the break. With 15 minutes left in the match and the score still 1-0, Lake Tahoe switched to a 3-4-3 to generate more attack — and turned up the pressure on the Roadrunners.
“We just needed players up there because we weren’t getting forward,” Evans said. “It worked out.”
LTCC sophomore Shawa Guerrero-Escobedo had one-on-one opportunities in the 85th and 87th minutes — both ended in hard tackles from Butte goalkeeper Brenna Meier and neither resulted in goals. The Coyotes were running out of chances, but still had one left.
“It was just about the timing and the placement — it just all came together,” Sanchez said. “All three forwards were working.”
In the closing minutes, sophomore Kendall Eagan sent a low cross into Guerrero-Escobedo. From a crowd, Guerrero-Escobedo laid off a pass to Sanchez alone in the box — the Las Vegas native slid a shot just inside the left post to tie the match.
“I wanted to cry,” Sanchez said. “It was a good feeling.”
Sanchez’s goal set off a jubilant celebration in the box, and ultimately lifted Lake Tahoe to a much-needed tie. The Coyotes are currently second in the conference standings, three points behind league-leading Lassen College and just ahead of both Butte and Feather River College.
“The girls want it, but they don’t know what wanting it actually entails,” Evans said. “They want the big things — the crosses, the goals, the wins, the titles — but they need to do the little things and adopt being a blue-collar team.”
COYOTES MEN OPEN SECOND ROUND WITH 5-0 VICTORY
In the second game of Friday’s doubleheader, the LTCC men’s soccer team rolled to a 5-0 victory over Butte. The Coyotes scored two goals in the first 12 minutes en route to a lopsided win that maintained their undefeated record in conference play.
Lake Tahoe (9-3-5, 5-0-2 GVC) pressured the Roadrunners from the opening kickoff Friday, and it led to a quick goal. Sophomore Jack Larter opened the scoring with an overhead kick in the fifth minute — the second goal in as many matches for the converted defender.
In the 12th minute, sophomore Stephen Flora bounced in a shot to put LTCC ahead 2-0. After halftime, freshman Lewis Gillings scored twice and freshman Sean Keith found the back of the net once as the Coyotes rolled to a five-goal victory over Butte (6-5-5, 3-4).
Both teams returned to action with a doubleheader at Feather River on Tuesday, Oct. 25. The Coyotes travel to play at Lassen on Tuesday, Nov. 1.