3-2 defeat breaks Men’s soccer’s win streak

Dons lose to West Valley after controversial penalty shot

Cristian Munoz Ayala, Staff Writer

The De Anza College men’s soccer team lost its first game of the season 3-2 against rival West Valley College, to snap a 10-game win streak, on Friday Oct. 10.

After the game, Dons’ sophomore forward Rajaee Delane held his head high and said he looked forward to training the next day to help improve the team the best way he could.

“Most importantly, just to relax tonight, keep the mind off the game,” Delane said. “Going into training, just tune back in.”

The game started and both teams were playing at a high tempo. West Valley’s freshman forward Emmanuel Montion managed to score in the first two minutes of the game.

The setback only made the Dons play better and faster. They controlled the game, created scoring opportunities and Dons’ freshman forward Connor Kurze leveled the game 1-1 in the 19th minute with a well-placed goal.

The fast pace of the game created many scoring chances and both goalkeepers had their fair share of work. Freshman goalkeeper Arshia Aghababazadeh had six saves including saves in big moments to keep the Dons close.

With the clock winding down to halftime, Delane controlled a cross from freshman midfielder Ranier Plantino and with one move he bicycle kicked the ball into the back of the net. He celebrated the goal in style with a backflip.

The Dons entered halftime leading 2-1.

When the second half started, De Anza kept control of the game and played with momentum.

West Valley’s high pressure helped the Vikings get a controversial penalty. Aghababazadeh blocked the penalty shot, but the referee stopped the game and gave West Valley another chance to take the penalty. This time West Valley’s freshman defender Gabriel Silva capitalized and tied the game 2-2.

Now West Valley had all the momentum and kept on pressuring.

With two minutes left in regular time, freshman forward Igor Ferreira scored the go-ahead goal for West Valley.

The Dons looked tired and demoralized, but kept fighting. Unfortunately, De Anza couldn’t tie the game and lost 3-2.

Head coach Rusty Johnson said his team played great, but could improve its defense.

“It’s important to keep your highs low and your lows high,” Johnson said. “This is definitely the first low of the season, and the guys need to take it positively and learn from it.”

De Anza’s next home game is on Friday Oct. 24 at 4 p.m. against Gavilan College.