No. 9 Canyons Has Postseason March Halted in 2-0 OT Loss at No. 1 Chaffey
By Jesse Muñoz/COC Sports Information Director
RANCHO CUCAMONGA — No. 9 College of the Canyons had its historic postseason run come to an end on Tuesday, taking No. 1 Chaffey College into a scoreless overtime period before eventually falling 2-0 in the third round of the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) Southern California Regionals.
Canyons (15-4-4) had advanced to the third round for the first time in program history with a 2-1 road result vs. No. 8 L.A. Pierce College on Tuesday. The Cougars began the postseason with a 4-0 home win over No. 24 Mt. San Jacinto in the opening round of the playoffs.
The back-to-back postseason victories set up an almost pre-destined match vs. Chaffey (20-0-2) which had been ranked as the No. 1 team in the state for most of the regular season. Canyons and Chaffey had been scheduled to play during the regular season, with that match postponed and eventually cancelled due to first weather and then fire and smoke related issues.
On Tuesday, the two teams battled for the full 90 minutes with neither team able to carve out any type of advantage.
Canyons was limited to just three shots in the game with Chaffey goalkeeper Autumn Gomez able to get in front of them all.
The Cougars' defensive presence continued to be outstanding. COC ended regulation vs. the Panthers having allowed just a single goal over its last 360 minutes of play.
In the overtime session Panthers' leading scorer Kayla Bergin finally broke through, getting one past COC sophomore goalkeeper Kyle Yuzon (10-4-3) for a 1-0 advantage. Bergin's score came unassisted in the 94th minute.
The two exhausted sides continued to do battle, with Canyons desperately looking for the equalizer, until the Panthers socked the game away in the 115th minute with another unassisted score, this time from Sydney Cotter, to give the home team a 2-0 lead and eventual final score.
Chaffey will now host No. 4 Mt. San Antonio College (20-1-1) at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 26. Mt. SAC defeated No. 5 Long Beach City College (16-3-3) by a 1-0 score on Tuesday to advance. The winner between Chaffey and Mt. SAC will move on to the CCCAA State Championship tournament.
The loss was just the fourth of the season, and first since Oct. 11, for a Canyons team that finished runner-up in the Western State Conference (WSC), South Division and played in the postseason for an 11th consecutive season under head coach Justin Lundin. COC was ranked No. 17 in the state in the final regular season California Community College Sports Information Association (CCCSIA) poll.
—Photo by Kyle Kawamoto/COC Sports Information