Texas College made a splash in its home and Red River Athletic Conference soccer openers on a slippery surface.
After both squads went winless during non-conference, Texas College overcame a rain delay in the women’s match and a furious comeback in the men’s contest to sweep the University of Southwest (N.M.) Thursday at the Texas College Athletic Field.
Leslie Arias scored her team’s first goal of the season as the Lady Steers squeaked out a 1-0 win over Southwest in the women’s affair.
Juan Montes booted in the go-ahead goal with just over 15 minutes left as the Steers scored a thrilling 4-3 win over Southwest in the men’s match.
The Steers (1-5, 1-0 in RRAC) needed only 14 minutes to go ahead by three goals.
Jesus Segovia opened the scoring 84 seconds into the game. Rafael Rico recorded the next two goals for the Steers in the ninth and 13th minutes, with the second coming off a pass from Segovia.
Southwest stormed back with the next three goals, cutting into the lead in the 25th minute on an Angel Hernandez goal, closing the gap to one on an Eduardo Monarrez score in the 65th minute and evening it with Krystian Romero’s delivery in the 74th minute.
Unfazed, TC needed only 16 seconds to take back the lead. Segovia set up Montes for an 18-yard shot outside the box, which he sent into the corner.
The men’s match featured eight yellow cards and two red cards. TC played a man down for the final 58 minutes and Southwest for the final 98 seconds.
“They were using extra strength from their heart,” said first-year TC coach Karl Iracheta, “We had a bad start at the beginning (of the year). I told the guys this game would be crucial to start conference with a win. It was a tough game but we did it.”
The Lady Steers (1-5, 0-1) capitalized early when Arias squeezed her way into the center of the field from 25 yards out and fired away.
“It was a really nice goal,” Iracheta said. “We held them from there.”
Southwest mounted nearly twice as many attacks, finishing with a 19-10 advantage on shots and 13-5 edge on shots on goal.
Diana Martinez made 12 saves for the Lady Steers, including nine in the second half, to preserve the shutout in a match interrupted 45 minutes due to lightning and showers.
The backline of Yolanda Reyes (left defender), Karla Valles (center defender), Abril Rodriguez (center defender) and Alejandra Lopez (right defender) played a big part in the victory.
“The back four played really good,” added Iracheta, whose squads play host to Texas Wesleyan in a doubleheader on Saturday beginning with the women’s match at 1 p.m. “They knew we had to start (conference on) the right foot.”