The Lancers men’s soccer team lost another non-conference game Friday, extending their losing streak to five games as San Diego Mesa College defeated them 5-2.
The Lancers had a streak of 376 minutes without scoring going into this game and have allowed six unanswered goals dating back to their game-tying goal in the 74th minute against Santa Ana College on Sept. 1.
Head coach Edgar Manvelyan hasn’t been saying much to the media as his team loses more games. Following the game on Friday, he declined to comment.
A through ball by a SDMC forward put the Olympians on the board first in the 15th minute. In the 28th minute, after 404 minutes without scoring, the Lancers finally put the ball into the net. The goal came from freshman forward Yezid Lopez on a throw-in by freshman defender Derek Bell.
The Olympians wasted no time and capitalized on a free kick in the 31st minute from just outside the box.
The easiest goal the Lancers were able to score this season came off of a penalty in the 46th minute when a Lancers forward was pushed from the back. Captain midfielder Fausto Espinoza was able to put it into the top right corner to even the score.
The game was a constant back and forth battle with the Lancers having a shots on goal advantage of 18-12. But they were unable to finish on a few attempts from very close range.
The Olympians once again didn’t hesitate following the Lancers goal and shifted into offense quickly. They were able to take the lead and keep it with three unanswered goals. The first was in the 52nd minute from a corner kick, the second was in the 76th minute from a shot outside the box, and the third was in the 83rd minute to catch the Lancers defense sleeping.
Derek Bell and freshman forward Christopher Chemlekian felt that their team is getting where they need to be to contend and turn their season around.
“I think we actually played better. We moved the ball a lot better today,” Bell said. “We tried to push up since we were down in the second half and that made us a little weaker in the back so they got those extra few goals. I think we just need to work on moving the ball and attacking more. We just have to try to get some wins in.”
Chemlekian said the team’s upcoming off week will be a chance to regroup.
“We have the week off so we really need to put in work this following week. We just have to figure it all out ourselves,” Chemlekian said. “It doesn’t really matter who we play. We just have to come together as a team, stick together in the locker room, and perform on the field. Our confidence is pretty low right now but we just need to get a couple results and hopefully turn the season around.”
The officials called a timeout in the 23rd minute while playing in 90-degree weather so the players and referees could stay hydrated. The area was humid and fans could smell the rubber from the turf while sitting in the bleachers.
Espinoza went down with an injury in the 66th minute and was unable to finish the game. He was diagnosed with a knee injury after the game and the timetable for his return to the field is uncertain. Though he felt optimistic, he wasn’t happy following the game.
“We could’ve got a win today but things didn’t go our way. But that’s soccer,” Espinoza said. “It’s difficult right now during this losing streak but we’ll bounce back.”
The Lancers (0-5-1) are getting ready for their final non-conference game this season. Cuyamaca College (3-1-2) will play at PCC’s Robinson Stadium on Friday Sept. 25 at 4 p.m.