The No. 3 seeded Lady Hornets (24-4) beat the No. 6 seeded Mounties (19-10), 12-7, in a game filled with miscommunication, a lack of execution and arguments with officials.
“You don’t have to play pretty,” said Gabriel Martinez, Hornet head coach. “You just need to win.”
With their season on the line, the Lady Hornets found themselves in quite the standstill in the first half. Tied at 3-3, heading into the closing moments of the first half, they finally made their move.
The Hornets (29-6) scored consecutive goals by Ashley Laos and Nicole Williams. Laos scored her goal on a lob shot, barely out of the reach of the Mt. SAC goalie, Tana Wilson. Meanwhile, Williams goal was much more aggressive as she led a breakaway in the final seconds, overwhelming Wilson with a quick shot to put Fullerton up 5-3 at the end of the first half.
“We just put our heads down, and realized we were playing like crap and decided to fix it,” said freshman Alicia Tully. She scored three goals of her own in the game.
Unfortunately, for the Mounties that was only the beginning of the offensive eruption for the Lady Hornets. Fullerton would score another three unanswered goals before the Mounties could stop the bleeding at 8-3.
Two of those goals would come from sophomore center, Leilani Vazquez and one from Sarah Benedict, sophomore. Vazquez finished with four goals on the night, all of them coming in the second half.
“We kicked ourselves in the butt to wake up,” said Vazquez. “We just had to try and play our game. We had to come out on top.”
The Lady Hornets season was not ready to come to an end, but the Mounties weren’t the only obstacle they had to face in the game.
“The refs had a significant impact on the outcome of the game,” Martinez said of the officials. “I think we were the better team, but the referees were a big part of the game, which they shouldn’t have been.”
Throughout, the match there was visible and audible anger from not only Martinez, but Mt. SAC Coach Chris Jackson.
“I don’t think they effected the outcome of the game, we got a couple of calls and so did they,” said Jackson.
After Fullerton’s five goal eruption, Mt. SAC settled in and answered back to make the game a bit more interesting, pulling within 10-7 at one point in the third quarter.
However, it would be too little, too late as the Lady Hornets would score two more unanswered goals in the fourth quarter. The team then advanced to the third round where they took on the Riverside Lady Tigers. Unfortunately, the Hornets fell short to the Tigers for the fourth time this season. This one, by a score of 12-8.
Goaltender, Jaonne Svendsen had seven saves, and did all that she could to keep the Hornets close.
Vazquez and Tully led the attack once again. Tully had a team-high four goals, while Vasquez added three more to her own total.
After the loss, the Hornets found out that they would be matching up with LA Valley for third place in southern California.
The FC defense executed much better.
The Hornets and LA Valley were tied at 5-5 when regulation expired. The great defensive play kept up throughout overtime, but FC added one goal and won 6-5.