VENTURA - It is many "first times" for the Lake Tahoe City College Coyotes in 2018.
In their first trip to the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) Women's Soccer State Championship tournament, the Coyotes utilized a dominant second half to defeat the San Bernardino Valley College Wolverines, 2-0, and earn the right to fight for a 2018 State Championships for the first time in program history.
It was a quite start to the contest as both teams were scoreless at the end of the first half. However, the second half was a completely different story with Lake Tahoe taking the reins, gripping tightly, and refusing to let go.
It was not until the 77th minute when the first goal was etched on the scoreboard behind an incredibly skilled combination from Lake Tahoe's Angelica Hurtado and Annie Brejc.
Brejc controlled the ball approximately five yards outside of the goalkeeper's box between two Wolverine defenders. As she continued on to attempt to split the two defenders, she lost her balance and began to tumble to the ground. However, her poised, athletic ability took over as she gently tapped the ball with the back of her inside foot to locate a wide open Hurtado. Hurtado gathered the prime pass, reared back, and fired home what turned out to be the game winner.
Samantha Frates added an insurance goal in the 90th minute stemming from a massive scrum just yards shy of the end line. She gathered a shot that ricochet off of the post on an initial shot attempt form teammate Emily Roberts. Frates was in the right place at the right time for the second goal of the game and an eventual Coyote victory.
Claudia Janese earns her 13th win of the season after racking up four saves in 90 minutes of action. Hurato paced the Coyotes with two shots, while four Wolverines recorded one shot.
The Coyotes will face the winner of Santiago Canyon and San Joaquin Delta in the state championship game on Sunday.
(Nicho DellaValle, Riverside City College Athletics)