By Amanda McMullan, OJC Assistant Women’s Soccer Coach
LA JUNTA — A road trip this past week garnered the Otero Junior College Women’s Soccer Team their first victories of the team’s inaugural season. The Lady Rattlers defeated Northwest Technical college on August 24 by a score of 5-0; following up with a second win against Barton College on August 25, 6-2.
According to Head Coach Donny Ribuado, the Barton game was physical from the beginning and within the first five minutes the Rattlers had some scoring opportunities.
“I knew it was only a matter of time before the goals would start rolling in if they continued to play with such intensity,” said Ribaudo.
In the 18th minutes, Jessie Parra, a defender from Broomfield, sent in a lofted long ball into the feet of teammate, Jenna Liverpool, a forward from Ipswich Town, England. Liverpool took on the last defender and found the net easily. With the score at 1-0, the Rattlers energy continued to increase and within a few minutes Erin Cortvriendt, a midfielder from Westminster, took the right line with incredible speed, beating two players. She cut the ball back, put a perfect pass into the box and opened up to receive it back. Cortvriendt then crossed the ball back post, where Kendra Reid, a midfielder from Aurora, made the back post run to finish. Barton received a corner which was placed well inside the 18 yard box. What looked like to be a dangerous play was shut down quickly by the Rattlers goal keeper, Kimi-Ann Kaniaupio, from Waipahu, Hawaii.
The game stayed at a high pace and in the 25th minute, Cortvriendt played Mackenzie Korbus a ball in the middle of the 18- yard box. Korbus, a forward from Colorado Springs, took a shot that deflected off the defender. Cortvriendt won the ball back in the box and laid it off again to Korbus, who this time finished a strong left footed shot at 15 yards.
In the 32nd minute, the Rattlers were awarded a free kick. Stephanie House, a midfielder from Aurora, struck a faultless ball directly to the back post where Amanda Garcia, a forward from Pueblo, timed her run, took one touch, and placed a shot front post, beating the keeper for another goal.
Barton played a long ball over the top to their forward, who ended up tripping Otero’s last defender. With no foul called, both teams played on. Barton’s forward dribbled with no pressure and took a shot outside the 18 yard box that was unstoppable.
Just before the first half ended, Cortvriendt found Korbous again for another goal off a cross, finishing the first half with a score of 5-1.
The second half started a little slower than the first half, with Barton capitalizing on their opportunity with a cross from their outside mid. Kaniaupio made an exceptional diving save, but the ball deflected back to another Barton player, who finished it with a score.
In the 80th minute Cortvriendt played a through ball for Liverpool to run onto so that she was one-on-one with the goalkeeper. Liverpool finished back post to put the Rattlers at 6-2 for the final score.
“The road trip was a great experience for our team,” said Coach Ribaudo. “I was really proud of the way they played and the intensity they brought to the field.”
The Lady Rattlers will meet CSU Pueblo in a scrimmage match on August 31st in Pueblo at 7:00 p.m. The first regular-season home match will be September 16, against Northwest Tech at 2:00 p.m.
To follow the Lady Rattlers’ soccer season go to: www.ojc.edu/wSoccer.aspx