TRINIDAD, Colo. – The Western Nebraska Community College men’s and women’s soccer teams earned 1-0 Region IX South wins over Trinidad State Junior College Saturdayafternoon in Trinidad, Colorado.
The Cougar men went to 2-0 in the South conference with the 1-0 shutout win over the Trojans and WNCC coach Todd Rasnic was pleased with his team’s performance in both wins.
The Cougar men played Saturday with several starters out with injuries but found a way to score and then played some strong defense to get the win.
“Our defense is strong this year. That is the big improvement that I see this year over last year is that our defense is fantastic,” Rasnic said. “We are not flashy. We are winning 2-1 and 1-0 but in the last four games we only had one goal scored on us.”
The WNCC men scored the only goal of the match on a Ramses Atahualpa penalty kick in the first half.
That was all the scoring the Cougars needed as the defense shutout the Trojans behind a strong goalkeeping effort from Leandro Faria, who recorded 14 saves in net.
Trinidad outshot the Cougars 19-8. The Trojans had 14 shots on frame compared to just two for the Cougars.
The Cougar women also captured a Region IX win on Saturday with a strong effort against Trinidad. Rasnic said that his women’s team came out in the second half and dominated play, getting the winning goal on a free kick.
“We started off slow and were exhausted from Friday’s game,” Rasnic said. “It was 0-0 at halftime and we had a discussion where I told them I wasn’t satisfied with the effort they were putting out on the field, so they came out in the second half and took over the game, dominating play. We got a couple free kicks and Carol put one in the back of the net. Overall it was a good performance. We showed up, defended well, and then figured out a way to score.”
Neither team scored a goal in the first half. The beginning of the second half was defensive as neither team could score.
WNCC finally broke the ice with 20 minutes left in the match when Caroline Vieira scored a free kick.
After that, the Cougar defense stayed strong in posting the shutout. It was the Cougar women’s second shutout win of the season after blanking Northwest last weekend 3-0.
Laramie Lake made five saves in net for the Cougars.
Both WNCC teams will be back in action Wednesday when they travel to face Northeastern Junior College in Sterling, Colorado. The Cougars will then have their home-opener on Saturday when Gillette College comes to Landers Soccer Field with action beginning at 1 p.m. for the women’s match.