The Pioneer

Men’s soccer dominates Antelope Valley

Photo | Pierre-Edouard Cineas

Photo | Pierre-Edouard Cineas

Louis LaVenture,
Sports Editor

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The Pioneers crushed visiting Antelope Valley on Tuesday by a final of 7-1. Senior forward Chris Lara found the back of the net three times recording the first hat trick in head coach Andy Cumbo’s tenure.

Prior to the game Cumbo was realistic about his team’s expectations, “Today our biggest focus is scoring early on in the first half. In the conference we are one of the leaders in shots and corner kicks, but we’ve struggled to score goals.”

Struggles went out the window on Tuesday and Cumbo had to be pleased with the rate that the goals came. Lara crushed a header past the Antelope Valley goalkeeper in the 10th minute nabbing the first goal of his hat trick.

“It felt awesome getting a hat trick today,” said Lara. “It was definitely on my mind. I wanted to get that third goal any way I could.”

Lara was able to capture that hat trick late in the contest, in minute 79, when he controlled a header from an Antelope Valley defender crushing a left footed strike past the goalkeeper completing the hat trick.

Lara had a career-day assisting on three goals in addition to the hat trick and now leads the Pioneers in goals with 5 and points tallying 13 with a team-high 34 shots.

Senior from Napa Adrian Maldonado also scored in the first half for CSUEB when in minute 34 he sent a header past the goalkeeper making the score 3-0 at the half.

The second half saw the Pioneers score four goals in a 15 minute span beginning in minute 69 when Lara recorded his second assist of the day after feeding Senior from Hayward Rica Guerra for his second goal of the season.

Less than two minutes later Lara got his third assist of the match when he found the senior from Mount Eden High School Javier Martin. Lara shook a defender and tapped a soft pass to Martin who drove a shot across his body finding the back of the net for his first goal of the game and his third goal of the season.

Martin praised his coach for the team’s success. “He (Cumbo) helps us become better on the field and off the field.”

The Pioneers got their seventh goal of the day when junior Duke Driggs found senior Trey James in front of the net putting it past the keeper in the 84th minute for the 7-1 final score.

With just three regular season games remaining CSUEB picked a great time to get hot. Up next for the Pioneers is a home game at 7 p.m. against Cal State Dominguez Hills tomorrow.

On Sunday CSUEB welcomes the 17th ranked Cal State Los Angeles to Pioneer Stadium in the final home game of the year for the Pioneers.

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