Sacramento, Calif. – The Cypress College women’s soccer program returns to the California Community College Women’s Soccer State Championship Final Four Tournament for 14th time in school history this weekend, when it faces off against the north's top seed, Santa Rosa Junior College (18-1-3) in a 10 a.m. matchup on Friday, December 2, on the campus of Cosumnes River College in Sacramento, Calif.
The second-seeded Chargers (15-4-4) make it back to the State Tournament for the first time since 2006, after an impressive run through this year's CCCAA Southern Regional Bracket that included a 2-0 shutout over sixth seeded L.A. Pierce College, and a 4-0 rout of No. 3 seed Ventura College on the road in the first two rounds. To punch their ticket to Sacramento, the Chargers broke their PK curse in the playoffs by edging last year's state champ, San Bernardino Valley, in a thrilling super regional matchup at Cypress College that finished in a 1-1 tie after regulation and two overtime periods, before the Chargers pulled off a 3-2 comeback win in PK's to end the Wolverines season.
On the other side of the bracket, the south's top seed Santiago Canyon College (21-1-1) will take on the No. 2 seed from the north, San Francisco City College (20-1-2), for the right to advance to State Championship Final set for 10 a.m. on Sunday.
If Cypress College and Santiago Canyon both find a way to win on Friday, it will set up a tiebreaking third game of the year between the two Orange Empire Conference powerhouses. The Chargers and Hawks each won on their home field In the two conference meetings of 2011.
As long as the Chargers continue to play like
Back Where They Belong 11/26/2011
Cypress, Calif. - It looked like the clock was about to strike midnight on the Cinderella run through the California Community College Athletic Association's Southern Regional Playoffs by the No. 11 seed Cypress College women's soccer team, but this story still has another chapter waiting to be written.
Cypress College advanced to the CCCAA Women's Soccer State Championship Tournament next weekend with a 1-1 tie in regulation and a 3-2 advantage in penalty kicks over No. 15 seed San Bernardino Valley College at Ray Haas Field in Cypress, Calif. today.
After 90 minutes of regulation play, and a couple minutes of stoppage time already in the books, the Chargers trailed defending state champion San Bernardino Valley College 1-0. Cypress College (16-4-5) desperately needed a goal to tie the game and send it to overtime, but shot opportunities were hard to come by all day against the fifteenth seeded Wolverines (15-6-4) aggressive defensive pressure.
That all changed when Cypress sophomore Stephanie Villasenor somehow found a way to brake through the SBVC defensive front and went streaking down the right sideline before making a cut with a perfect angle towards the goal. When Villasenor caught an SBVC defender out of position, she drew a foul after being taken down right inside the box before she was able to get a shot off.
With the season hanging in the balance, Villasenor was as cool as the under side of the pillow when she got the Wolverines goalie to bite on a fake to the left, then drilled a shot to the back of the net on a wide open right side, to tie the game at 1-1, and send the standing room only crowd at Ray Haas field into an uproar.
The whistle blew just a few minutes later, and just like in last year's playoffs, Cypress and SBVC were heading to overtime tied 1-1. But, this time around, the Chargers were at home with the Cypress Charger faithful out in full force to cheer them on to victory.
Two minutes into the first overtime period, Cypress appeared to take a 2-1 lead on a goal that was called off on a controversial offsides penalty. After that, neither team could score a goal after the first 15 minute overtime period was finished.
In the second OT, the Chargers nearly went up again, but a great diving save by the San Bernardino Valley goalkeeper kept the game tied at 1-1.
It would remain that way the rest of the period, and after 90 plus minutes of regulation, and two 15 minute overtime periods, it was like deja vu all over again for the Chargers and Wolverines.
For a second straight year the game would be decided on penalty kicks.
At the end of the second overtime, Cypress' freshman keeper, Michelle Mendez, relieved starting goalie Kayla Neujahrwho played the whole game on a sore knee. Despite never having defended goal in a penalty kick situation, the Cypress College coaching staff was very confident in Mendez, and didn't hesitate to send her in to play goal with the season hanging in the balance.
She didn't have to wait long to defend her first ever shot in PK's, as SBVC got to go first, but missed high on its first attempt. Kayla Arenas led off for Cypress, and delivered with a blast that beat the San Bernardino Valley keeper to put the Chargers on top 1-0. The Wolverines and Chargers both missed on their second shot attempts to keep the score where it was.
San Bernardino scored on its next attempt to tie it at 1-1, but Cypress failed to convert again and lost its advantage. Another goal by the Wolverines put them up 2-1, and for a third straight time Cypress couldn't hit.
Up 2-1 with only one player from each side left to shoot, San Bernardino Valley had a chance to close out the match. Last season, SBVC advanced to the South Super Regional after edging Cypress 8-7 in penalty kicks on its home field.
This time the game was at Cypress College - where the Chargers haven't lost all season. With the state and national championship banners hanging on the fence behind her, Mendez would make sure this story would have a different ending.
After an SBVC miss gave the Chargers new life, Cypress veteran, Natalie Farah-Enriquez, stepped up to keep the Chargers' season alive when she caught the SBVC keeper guessing wrong, and scored to get Cypress College back to even at 2-2.
Facing her sixth shooter of PK's, Mendez came up huge when she stoned the Wolverines to give the advantage back to Cypress. Cassidy VanDermolen didn't let this chance slip away when she fired a shot by the Wolverines' goalkeeper to put the Chargers on top 3-2 in PK's, and punch Cypress' ticket to the 2011 CCCAA Women's Soccer State Championship next weekend in Sacramento, Calif.
This trip will mark Cypress College's first trip back to the women's soccer State Championship Tournament since 2006, and 14th appearance overall in the program's 20 year history.
The Chargers made their first trip to the State Championship in 1993 - only two year's after legendary Cypress coach Ray Haas started the program in 1991. After losing in the first round of the playoffs the following season, Haas' Charger teams began an impressive 12-year-run of State Championship appearances that spanned from 1995 to 2006 - including three State Championships (1998, 1999, 2004), and a National Championship in 1999.
When the Chargers take the field at the 2011 CCCAA Women's Soccer State Championship on December 2 & 4 at Cosumnes River College in Sacramento, Calif., they will be right back where they belong, and hopefully finish writing the final chapter of a storybook ending to this season.
_Cypress, Calif. - The Cypress College women's soccer team will host San Bernardino College in a California Community College Super Regional match at Cypress College. The match is scheduled for 2 p.m. on Saturday, November 26.
The winner will earn a berth to CCCAA State Championship Tournament in Sacramento.
Admission for the event is $8 dollars for all seats exept approved CCCAA representative.
A $5 admission fee ill be allowed for all identified student, faculty, staff, senior citizens 60 & over, and children under 12 years old.
There will be a live webstream of the game on the home of Cypress College Athletics, www.cypresscollege.edu/athletics.
Parking for the event is free in parking lot 5 between the Physical Education building and the soccer field
If you are available please try and make it out to the game to root on the Chargers as they play for a chance to make their 14 appearance in the State Tournament.
One Away From State 11/23/2011
_Ventura, Calif. - After a convincing 4-0 shutout over the south's No. 3 seed Ventura College on Tuesday, the Chargers find themselves just one win away from returning to the CCCAA State Championship Final Four Tournament for the first time since 2006.
In the most unlikely of circumstances, No. 11 seed Cypress College will host No. 15 seed San Bernardino College on in a super regional matchup on Saturday that will send one squad to the State Tourney.
Cypress' two returning sophomores did all they could on Tuesday to keep the Chargers on track to claim their fourth State Championship since the program's inception 20 years ago.
Sophomore Jacqueline Lara didn't re-join the team until after the season started, and wasn't there for the Chargers 1-0 loss to Ventura in the second game of the year. She made up for lost time this on Tuesday, and helped her team get a little payback in the process by lifting the Chargers to their second road victory of this year's playoffs with a three-goal effort against an over-matched Ventura squad.
The Chargers other returning sophomore, Natalie Farah-Enriquez, assisted Lara on her first goal of the game, and added an insurance goal of her own when she converted on a pass from Lisette Guevara in the second half. Nayeli Meza picked up an assist on Lara's second score, and Cassidy VanDermolden recorded an assist on the goal that gave Lara a hat trick.
The Chargers went up 1-0, 21 minutes into the game, when Farah-Enriquez and Lara found a seem in the Ventura defense to combine for the eventual game winner thanks to some outstanding play in goal by Cypress' brickwall tandem of Kayla Neujahr and Michelle Mendez, who posted an eighth straight shutout, and 17th on the season. Cypress swarming defense has played a major role in the Chargers steady improvement as the season progressed.
With six minutes to go in the first half, Lara and Meza hooked to send the Chargers into the break up 2-0. Farah Enriquez scored four minutes into the second half and the Cypress faithful in attendance could already taste a win.
When the news of San Bernadino's upset of College of the Canyons came with time ticking down, Cypress knew they just needed to hold on, and they would be playing at home on Saturday for a chance to go to state.
Lara finished off the scoring for the game with when she scored on a VanDermolden pass to make it a 4-0 and guarantee Cypress at least one more game this season.
If the Chargers can get it done at home on Saturday against 15th seeded San Bernadino, they will punch their ticket to Sacramento to play in their 14th State Championship Tournament in school history.
Legendary Cypress head coach Ray Haas began a tradition of excellence at Cypress College that culminated in the 1999 National Championship, three State Titles - 1998, 1999 and 2004 and 12 consecutive trips to the State Championship Tournament.
A solid run to a state crown this season could be just what the Chargers need to get back to where they expect to be every year.
Check back for the game time and more information about this Saturday's Super Regional Match at Cypress College.
Chargers Stun Peirce to Advance in Playoffs 11/22/2011
_Woodland Hills, Calif. - It was like deja vu all over again for the Chargers when they knocked L.A. Pierce College out of the playoffs with a 2-0 road victory on Saturday.
The Chargers sent Pierce packing back in 2007 when they went on the road and won 2-1, this time they didn't even allow a goal.
Cypress missed on a few chances to score in the first half of play and both team went into the break scoreless at the end of the first half.
It didn't take long for the Chargers to take control of the match when they went back on the field.
Seven minutes into the second period, Justine Hauck headed in the go-ahead goal off a perfect pass from Megan Ollar to put the Chargers on top 1-0.
Cypress would get an insurance goal around the 83 minute mark when acqueline Lara found Samantha Rice to make it a 2-0 game. Rice smoked a shot by the keeper to seal the deal and send Cypress into the second round of the playoffs.
Kayla Neujahr played brilliantly in goal for the Chargers to earn the shutout. She finished with pair of saves.As a team, Cypress outshot the L.A. Pierce 6-3 and held a 3-2 in shots on goal, including converting on two of those.
Cypress will travel to Ventura on Tuesday, November 22 to take on No. 3 seed Ventura College in a second round matchup that should be very competetive.
The Chargers will be looking for a little redemption this time around after dropping a close 1-0 decision the second game of the year. Cypress is playing much better now than they were back then.
Rice and Arenas scored all three goals.
_Cypress, Calif. - Going into the game, the Cypress College women's soccer coaching staff did the math and came up with only two possible results.
Win and you're in... probably. Lose and you're out... definitely.
With their backs against the wall, the Chargers had only one choice - put on a dominant performance on the road.
Cypress did just that, and pounded Fullerton with 21 more total shots in the game, 23-2, a 10-1 edge in shots on goal, and a 9-4 advantage in corners.
Jessica Rice got the Chargers on the board early, with her first goal of the game just 8 minutes in, when she converted on a pass from Kayla Arenas to put Cypress on top 1-0.
Eight minutes later, Arenas found Rice again to stretch the Chargers lead to 2-0 over the Hornets. Fullerton caught a few breaks before the half when several of Cypress College's shots were just a little off the mark to keep it a two goal game.
It didn't take long after the break for the Chargers to score again though. This time it was Arenas' turn to light up the scoreboard when she found the back of the net from the offside on a pass from Megan Ollar only 24 seconds into the second half.
That closed out the scoring for both sides, and helped Cypress secure a 3-0 Orange Empire Conference victory to close out the regular season.
With the victory, Cypress looks to be in good shape to earn a playoff spot, but most likely it will be on the road. The official matchup and game time will be announced early in the week.
Make sure to follow Cypress College Athletics on Twitter or become a fan on Facebook to be the first to find out.
Cypress Blanks OCC 1-0 11/08/2011
Ollar scored the game winner.
_Cypress, Calif. - The Chargers pulled out a 1-0 victory over Orange Coast College in a must-win home finale.
Sophomore Megan Ollar scored the games only goal to give the Chargers all they needed to earn an Orange Empire Conference win over Orange Coast. In the previous meeting earlier this season, Cypress and Coast tied 1-1.
Now the Chargers will have to go on the road to close out the season with a matchup against Fullerton College.