M. Soccer: Early deficit doesn't slow down Falcons

Armando Ibarra, Jr. (9) chips in one of his two goals in the win over Bakersfield
Armando Ibarra, Jr. (9) chips in one of his two goals in the win over Bakersfield

On Wednesday in their non-conference game against Bakersfield College, the Cerritos College men's soccer team didn't let a first half goal slow them down from their game plan. The Falcons (4-1-0) scored a pair of goals in each half to pull away for a 4-1 victory. The team will host San Diego City College at 4:00 p.m. next Tuesday.

The Renegades (0-2-2) scored in the 13th minute when Cerritos goalkeeper Pablo Rivera (Basalt, CO HS) was screened on the shot by Daniel Nino that snuck into the left corner. It took less than nine minutes to get the equalizer on a beautiful set play. With sophomore Armando Ibarra, Jr. (Downey HS) taking the corner kick, he was able to place the ball at the foot of freshman Antonio Negrete (St. John Bosco HS), who flicked the ball off his heel and into the net past goalkeeper Adrian Sandoval.

Prior to the end of the first half, the Falcons took the lead and never looked back. Freshman Eduardo Exiga (Bellflower HS) found freshman Uriel Sanchez (Servite HS) just outside the top of the 18-yard box. Sanchez controlled the pass, turned and fired a shot that went under the diving arms of Sandoval.

It became a 3-1 game when Cerritos was able to outlet the ball in a quick manner, which directly led to the goal. Freshman goalkeeper Alex Ledesma (Bellflower HS) turned a save off the foot of Jalen Prioleau into an offensive break, as he sent the ball to freshman Orlando Martinez (Bright Star Secondary Charter Academy HS). After gathering the ball, Martinez found Ibarra, who drilled a shot into the net for some insurance. It would come in handy, as Bakersfield thought they had pulled to within one goal with 23 minutes remaining. The offside call was confirmed after Andrew Gonzalez had put a rebound into the net, which negated the goal.

The Falcons had a little more offense left in the tank and it looked like they would lead 4-1 when freshman Evan Vance (St. Anthony HS) had his liner careen off the crossbar. However, the ball was retained by Cerritos, with Martinez controlling the ball and fed Ibarra, who scored his second goal of the half and secured the 4-1 win. Ibarra, who had five goals in 24 games during the 2019 season, has found the back of the net five times through his first four games of the year.

Photos by Daryl Peterson