Women’s soccer honors seniors over the weekend

2015 redesigned Pioneer logo.

Tam Duong Jr.

2015 redesigned Pioneer logo.

Marissa Marshall,
Staff Writer

On Saturday, three Cal State East Bay women’s soccer seniors were honored during their last game as Pioneers: midfielder Megan Massone, defender Nicole Lutz and defender Janelle Herrera.

The three teammates have been together since their freshman year of college, from dorming together to the long bus rides between games. It’s rare to see a unit like this stick together over the course of four years. Especially in CSUEB soccer where players not staying the full four years has been a recurring theme.

“After four years and it all being over, it’s pretty sad,” Herrera said. “When you’ve played the game for so long and your whole life revolves around it and one day it all stops, it’s pretty overwhelming.”

The Pioneers faced the Cal State San Marcos Cougars (8-6-2 overall, 6-4-1 CCAA) in an intense game that went into double overtime.

In the first half, the Cougars outshot the Pioneers, 6-3. The Pioneers sophomore goalkeeper, Cheyanne Foster, remained strong in the net, making four saves to help keep the score even at 0-0. The Pioneers were defended and did not allow the Cougars to capitalize on their four corner kick attempts.

The two teams ended the first half scoreless. At the start of the second half, the Cougars came out ready to attack. At the 51 minute mark, junior defender Amy Wilson received the ball from a corner kick and headed it to her teammate, junior defender Jessica Moreno, who shot the ball into the top of the goal which put San Marcos up 1-0.

Seven minutes later, the Pioneers were able to respond and tie the game. Freshman midfielder Abby Buitrago shot the ball off the San Marcos goalkeeper’s head, sending it into the top of goal.

The two teams were competing, but East Bay gave up multiple corner kicks which put them in trouble. In the 72nd minute, the Cougars senior defender Morgan Simmons received a corner kick in front of the goal and was able to put the ball in the back of the net.

East Bay bit right back in the 78th minute when freshman forward Nae’lani O’Neal dribbled the ball down the field as she beat multiple defenders and shot past the keeper.

The game was tied again, and the Pioneers were lucky. They gave the Cougars seven corner kicks and nine shots in the first half and could have easily been down, but weren’t.

Throughout the remainder of the first half, neither team scored and the game was forced into its first overtime. Both teams looked exhausted, after having been in a back-and-forth for 90 minutes.

With the first overtime concluded, the two teams headed into their second OT which would be the last chance for either side to end the game with a win.

Five minutes into the second overtime, the Pioneers let up another corner kick and the Cougars sophomore forward, Madyson Brown, took the kick from the left side. As the ball traveled, sophomore midfielder Lauren Perry came in and headed the ball into the back of the net, bringing not only the game but East Bay’s season to a close.

“Being a part of this collegiate program has really showed me what representing the school in an influential way can be like,” Massone said, “and that it is also a privilege to be a student-athlete. I will miss getting ready in the locker room before games, bus rides and game huddles. But what I will miss most of all is being around my teammates.”

The Pioneers ended the season with a record of 4-12-2 overall and 1-9-2 in conference play.