Preview of the soccer season

Nayeli+Martinez%2C+26%2C+defends+the+ball+against+a+Bakersfield+College+offensive+player+during+a+soccer+game+on+August+30%2C+2019+at+Los+Medanos+College+in+Pittsburg%2C+California.+
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Preview of the soccer season

Nayeli Martinez, 26, defends the ball against a Bakersfield College offensive player during a soccer game on August 30, 2019 at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg, California.

Nayeli Martinez, 26, defends the ball against a Bakersfield College offensive player during a soccer game on August 30, 2019 at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg, California.

Erick Amaya

Nayeli Martinez, 26, defends the ball against a Bakersfield College offensive player during a soccer game on August 30, 2019 at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg, California.

Erick Amaya

Erick Amaya

Nayeli Martinez, 26, defends the ball against a Bakersfield College offensive player during a soccer game on August 30, 2019 at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg, California.

Jesus Cano, @juice_cano

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The Los Medanos College women’s soccer team is coming off one of its greatest seasons in history. Continuing this trend, this is the first time in a record 24 years that LMC won the Bay Valley Conference and resulted in a home playoff game.

Graduation took its toll on the team with many key contributors from last year’s squad having to move on. LMC will certainly need many of its new players to step up in order to provide another championship to the team.

“We lost a lot of starters to graduation, so it’s mostly a new group,“ said four-year Head Coach Zach Sullivan. “The goal is to win the conference every year, we know we are the team to beat from last year, so will get every team’s best effort.”

Last year’s success attracted many local talents from high school leagues such as the Bay Valley Athletic League and the Diablo Athletic League. 

“This year we are going to rely on some incoming players to step up fresh out of high school. We are loaded with talent. Our attacking options will make practice competitive,” said Sullivan.

One of the few returners is sophomore Holly Gallagher, one of LMC’s most versatile players. Gallagher will primarily play defense this season alongside sophomore Marymar Mejia. Freshmen Nayeli Martinez Rojas and Michelle Cisneros will step in for the Mustangs in the backline. Marianna Giovanetti, who originally committed to University of San Francisco, will create an immediate impact for LMC.

Besides defense, there is a completely different lineup for the Stangs.

“Everyone is capable of being a starter this year and it shows with the competitiveness at practice,” said Gallagher.  “I think everyone really wants to be here and once we get more into season those connections between us based off the drive to win will be strong.”

One of LMC’s strong links will be its versatility. Sullivan mentions that he has plenty of players that can play all around the pitch like Anissa Gomez, Isabel Dumapit, Alicia Cardenas and Las Positas transfer, Eryn Wheatley.

LMC will need to replace top goal scorers Charissa Day (11) and Sofia Kerns (9). They will have a plethora of Pittsburg High School alumni at its disposal with Litzy Ramirez, Nayeli Carbajal, Jocelyn Guttierrez and Mariah Minjares, in addition with the late arrival of Sarah Figueroa.

Freshman Alissa Caburnay is the starting goalkeeper. As a senior at Antioch High School, she tallied 179 saves.

Similar to last season, LMC has scheduled a tough non-conference schedule. Five out of the seven opponents the Stangs will be squaring off against made the playoffs, including San Joaquin Delta College who made an appearance in the California final four.

Through two games, LMC is 2-0 and have outscored opponents 11-0, with Gomez racking up five goals in that span. 

Visit https://www.losmedanos.edu/soccer/index.aspx for more information on the soccer team’s roster and schedule.

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