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CNCC soccer to wrap season this weekend

Spartans prepare for Utah State Saturday, conference tournament next week

Colorado Northwestern Community College's Jesus Cazares goes into a bicycle kick to keep the ball in opponents' territory during the Spartan men's soccer game Saturday against College of Southern Nevada. The CNCC men and women host their final games of the regular season this weekend before attending the Scenic West Athletic Conference tournament the following week.
Andy Bockelman

The inaugural season is nearly finished for Colorado Northwestern Community CollegeColorado Northwestern Community College soccer teams, and though it’s been a difficult one, the fight continues for the Spartans. soccer teams, and though it’s been a difficult one, the fight continues for the Spartans.

Colorado Northwestern Community College soccer teams, and though it’s been a difficult one, the fight continues for the Spartans.

The CNCC men and women host their final games of the regular season this weekend at home against Utah State University Eastern.

The conclusion to the season follows a grueling previous week that tested both teams with a road series starting Oct. 12 at Salt Lake Community College and moving on the following day at Snow College, in Ephraim, Utah.

Against Salt Lake, women lost, 6-0, and men fell, 5-1, with Jesus Cazares netting the lone Spartan goal. Injuries affected both teams as a recovering Bethanie Najera took over in goal to reduce running, resulting in starting goalie Hannah Walker hurting her ankle in the field.

Men likewise just managed to field the minimum 11 players, head coach Lance Noble noting that players continue to get through the year with “Scotch tape and super glue.”

Against Snow, both Spartan squads lost — women 8-0, men 4-0 — in games that Noble said showed “leaps and bounds improvements” from the last time CNCC played the Badgers, with men getting 13 shots on goal and for women, Najera and Amairani Acosta holding down the box.

“A lot of injuries, no subs, it’s been tough,” Acosta said.

She added that the games in Utah were arguably the best the team has played, largely because of a more positive attitude even when the going got rough.

“We worked together more, we stuck together and told each other ‘good job,’” she said.

Acosta was in goal again this past Saturday as the Spartans hosted College of Southern Nevada, losing 9-0. For the men, Cazares again took the only score of the day, a header late in the game, to finish a 4-1 defeat to the Coyotes.

This Saturday’s games against the Golden Eagles — which Noble aims to make the school’s pink day as part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month — start at noon with the women, the men following at 2 p.m., all at Loudy-Simpson Park.

The year will not be over just yet, though, with the Spartans hitting the road one last time the next week for the Scenic West Athletic Conference’sScenic West Athletic Conference’s final tournament, which includes all five schools. final tournament, which includes all five schools.

Scenic West Athletic Conference’s final tournament, which includes all five schools.

The site is not yet finalized but will likely be back in Utah — either at Salt Lake or Snow — as the hosting duties will go to the top SWAC women’s team, Noble said.

With 0-11 records, both teams are firmly in fifth place, though the coach believes Saturday will show if the men have what it takes to make one final charge and topple the fourth-place team in the tourney.

“If everything clicks, I really think we can win that,” he said.

Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com or follow him on Twitter @CDP_Sports.Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com or follow him on Twitter @CDP_Sports.


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