ECC men’s soccer team advances to third round of playoffs


Players from the El Camino College men’s soccer team surround and cheer on Melvyn Perez-Cortez, No. 13, after he scored a goal against Orange Coast College in the 48th minute of the match at Murdock Stadium on Tuesday, Nov. 26. “At halftime we had a speech with the coach and he said to ‘come out strong’ and that’s what we did and it benefited us a lot and [the game] went in our favor,” Perez-Cortez said. Rosemary Montalvo/The Union

Five minutes into the second half and El Camino College men’s soccer team leading Orange Coast College, ECC midfielder Alvin Perez took a corner kick and centered the ball into the penalty box.

5-foot-5-inch ECC forward Melvyn Perez-Cortez out-jumped the OCC defense and sent a header the into the back of the net to give the Warriors a 3-1 lead in the 40th minute of the match.

“At halftime we had a speech with the coach and he said to ‘come out strong’ and that’s what we did and it benefited us a lot and [the game] went in our favor,” Perez-Cortez said. said.

Seven minutes later, ECC forward Kalyl Silva stole the ball from a Pirates player and juked two other defenders at midfield.

Silva glanced up to find OCC’s goalkeeper standing outside of the penalty box and floated the ball over the goalie from 45-yards out that slowly rolled into the back of the net.

“It felt amazing,” Silva said. “I had a chance just like that against Mt. Sac and I missed it, so it felt good to get this one.”

The ECC men’s soccer team scored four unanswered goals to beat OCC in the second round of the California Community College Athletic Association SoCal Regional playoffs on Tuesday, Nov. 26, at Murdock Stadium.

The No. 4 seed Warriors will move on to play Mt. San Antonio College in the next round of the SoCal Regional playoffs on Saturday, Nov. 30, with a chance to go to state playoffs.

“It doesn’t matter who we play,” Warriors’ coach Mike Jacobson said. “I like our way of doing things.”

OCC struck first as midfielder Julian Madrigal gave the No. 5 seed Pirates the early lead in the 21st minute. The Warriors responded with a goal by midfielder Oliver Diaz that sent them to half time tied.

“You got to keep grinding things out,” Jacobson said. “That’s what we talk about to the guys, is grinding things out.”

Diaz struck again in the second minute of the second half before Perez-Cortez and Silva’s goals put the game out of reach.

“If we can get one goal, lets go get the next goal and if we can get the next goal after that,” Jacobson said. “[We can] never let off the pedal, just keep it going until the game is over.”

It was a physical game from start to finish with both teams shoving and tripping each other and the referee calling a total of 29 fouls as well as handing out four yellow cards, one of those being to the entire ECC men’s soccer team.

ECC held position of the ball throughout most of the game and were able to create opportunities to have nine shots on goal compared to the four shots on goal that OCC had.

“Its about making plays on the defensive side, its about making plays on the attacking side and these guys made plays and our football and our way was good enough,” Jacobson said. “And when you add making plays and finishing your opportunities, you get a scoreline like that.”