By Juan Betancourt
The Brookhaven College Lady Bears soccer team defeated the nationally ranked Eastfield Harvesters Sept. 27, 2-0, to extend their winning streak to five games.
The Lady Bears took control of the field during the first 10 minutes of gameplay. By the 14th minute, Lady Bear Linda Molina connected with teammate Jazmine Bustos to take the first shot on goal, but missed after the ball went high.
Immediately after, the Harvesters’ left wing, Elizabeth Valdez, outran Brookhaven’s Joanna Bess. The Lady Bears’ goalkeeper, Daniela Marin, moves out of the goal box and Valdez shot the ball wide, hitting the outside net and almost giving the Harvesters the lead.
The Bears were awarded a corner kick 25 minutes into the match. Lady Bear Brenda Hernandez crossed the ball, which hit teammate Vanessa Gonzalez’s stomach, and the Harvesters’ defense cleared it out.
Minutes later the Harvesters’ goalkeeper jumped to block a cross from Lady Bear Julie Ortega but the Harvester made her move too early. Lady Bear Maddie Irving, already in the penalty area, hit the ball over the goalie, making the score 1-0.
Hernandez then crossed the ball once more to an unblocked teammate, Joseline Sorto, who shots the ball to right corner, hitting the post.
During the final minute of the half, Sorto juked two Harvester defenders and passed to Irving, who hesitated before taking a shot that landed in the goalie’s arms, ending the half.
The Harvesters, down by one point, attempted a rebound in the second half.
At minute 64, the Lady Bears fouled, giving Harvester Emily Juarez a chance to score. She took a shot from outside of the box, and Marin barely stopped the point.
The Harvesters continued to pressure the Lady Bears, who responded with a corner kick attempt by Lady Bear Samantha Baxter. Teammate Karol Rodriguez saw the ball coming right toward her head, easily knocking the ball in and making the game 2-0.
“Heading the ball has always been one of my good talents,” Rodriguez said after scoring the game-winning goal.
Five minutes later, Baxter delivered another corner kick, Rodriguez made a header pass to Bustos, who shots the ball to the left post. The only Harvester guarding the post blocked the shot with her legs, saving the team from being down by three point.
The Lady Bears are now 5-1-0 in conference play and will host another game against North Lake College on Oct. 11.
“They played so well,” Jim Elder, head coach, said after the game. “I was really amazed by their maturity – having possession [and] composure with the ball and composure with the pressure.”