CONCORDIA, Kansas — On a brisk Tuesday afternoon in Concordia, the Cloud County Community College women's soccer team saw its goal scorers start to heat up in a dominating 10-0 rout of Pratt Community College.
Cloud County (8-3 overall, 6-2 KJCCC West) got off to a slow start by the T-Birds' standards as they scored just once — courtesy of a goal from sophomore captain Ingrid Silva — its first 12 shots against the visiting Beavers (1-12 overall, 1-7 KJCCC West).
The dam burst in the 36th minute, however, as a goal from freshman midfielder Angie Vergara sparked an onslaught of four goals in the final nine minutes of the first half for the T-Birds to balloon the lead to 5-0. Vergara finished the afternoon with a goal and three assists.
"We were finally getting the ball wide like we've been working on. Our outside middles were going one-on-one with their defenders, and (assistant coach Gefte Blanc) has had the girls working on a crossing drill daily," said Cloud County head coach, James Ross. "What opened the floodgates was the women started finishing their shots. We didn't change anything around. We also had less dribbling (Tuesday). That was the best passing I've seen the women's team move the ball."
Freshman midfielder Maria Barbosa tallied each of her two goals in the first half, while freshman forward Abigail Conway polished off Cloud's first-half scoring at the 39:39 mark with the first of her two goals on the day off a cross from Vergara.
Cloud County's reserves got in on the act in the second half as freshmen Jessica Conrado and Berenice Pacheco each scored their first respective goals of the season. Fellow freshmen Yasmidt Mendoza and Tatiana Suarez rounded out the scoring for the T-Birds.
Cloud will look to build of Tuesday's performance when it travels to take on Barton Community College at 2 p.m. on Thursday. A win against the Cougars (5-4-3 overall, 3-3-2 KJCCC) would give the T-Birds a chance to challenge for the top spot in the standings, currently own by No. 18 Hutchinson (11-0-1 overall, 6-0-1 KJCCC West).
Due to a weather postponement earlier this season, the Blue Dragons and T-Birds conclude the regular season with back-to-back games against each other on Oct. 21 and Oct. 23.
"Women have to run the table to win conference," Ross said. "If we don't run the table, we have to at least split with Hutch so we can hold on to the No. 2 seed and host a first-round playoff game. But if the women's team finishes scoring chances, we can win the conference. If we don't finish, we won't win the conference or the region. It's very simple for the women's team."