A late game surge for Santa Ana College forced the Orange Coast College women’s soccer team’s third draw in a row in a conference game on Friday.
OCC couldn’t hold onto a two-goal lead and allowed the Dons to tie the game late in the second half.
“We have to be better in the defensive box for sure,” head coach Kevin Smith said. “We didn’t do a good job of clearing the ball very well so we gave them second and third chances when they were attacking.”
Defense proved to be costly in the second half. The Pirates allowed seven shots in the second half compared to just two in the first.
“The girls are working hard. It’s really about executing and scoring goals,” Smith said.
Freshman goalkeeper Cindy Suarez had a rough game, saving just half of the shots she handled from Santa Ana.
Sophomore midfielder Tiffany Chantler had a great outing on offense, scoring both Pirate goals.
In the first half, the Pirates put pressure on the Santa Ana defense. Most of the first half was spent attacking the goal.
Getting off to a speedy start, the Pirates scored in the seventh minute when freshman midfielder Iran Enriquez found Chantler to give Coast an early one goal lead.
In the 25th minute, Chantler capped off the scoring after an assist from freshman Cassidy Klein extending OCC’s lead to 2-0.
With Chantler’s brace, she extends her team lead on offense to 11 goals and 14 points.
Once the second half started, the Dons offense got rolling led by sophomore midfielder Brianna Ceballos, who sent the ball passed Suarez for an unassisted goal in the 52nd minute to cut Coast’s lead to just 2-1.
The Pirates struggles of closing games out continued when freshman midfielder Lauryn Wood connected with Ceballos for her second of the game, tying the game with less than five minutes remaining.
Making every play count is a trend the Pirates hope to continue the rest of the season. Strategy, focus, and desire are needed all throughout the game to succeed, said Smith
OCC remains in sixth place in conference. The last Pirate home game will be Tuesday 3 p.m. against winless Norco. The team will finish its regular season at Saddleback on Friday at 1 p.m.