The hopes of Westmont Men’s Soccer (6-7-2, 6-2 PacWest) to win a PacWest championship took a hit today at Thorrington Field, but are still very much alive.
The Warriors suffered a 2-0 loss at the hands (or rather, feet) of Dominican (8-5-3, 6-2-1).
“Today was very much a playoff-type match against a playoff-caliber team,” Westmont head coach Morgan Cathey said. “Both teams were doing everything they could do to continue their seasons and gain the ability to play for a championship.”
For Dominican, a loss today would have eliminated the Penguins from the championship race.
“Early on in the game, I think the best chance fell to us, but we didn’t take that opportunity,” Cathey said. “They capitalized off our mistake in the buildup, and that was the game.”
In the 29th minute, a misplayed ball in the back row resulted in an easy goal for Dominican’s Dimani Mathlin, making the score 1-0.
“Our guys worked incredibly hard throughout the game,” Cathey said. “In the second half, we played very well and created numerous opportunities. Unfortunately, we didn’t take those.”
Dominican’s second goal came in the 88th minute after Westmont had added an additional offensive player to try and even the score.
“In the last five minutes, we put on another player to try and get the result, which meant it would be open if they transitioned,” Cathey said. “We didn’t execute in those moments.
“The credit to Dominican is that they took advantage of the opportunities that were presented to them. For our guys, that is a great lesson to learn from. I hope this will be an opportunity that drives them to take even more from the opportunities that will present themselves in the next game.
“We still have an awesome opportunity in front of us with Point Loma. If we win the next two games, we will be conference champions. Our guys know that, and they are hungry to be the best they can be.
“I am not at all concerned because I have seen them respond really well and look forward to seeing the response in these next few days and in this match on Wednesday.”
Point Loma (11-4) sits atop the PacWest standings with a conference mark of 7-1 and a tally of 21 points. Dominican moved ahead of the Warriors into second place with 19 points. Westmont is now tied for third with Hawai’i Hilo (9-6, 6-3) with 18 points.
If the Warriors win the last two games of the season against Point Loma and Concordia (5-8, 4-4), they would tally 24 points.
In this scenario, Point Loma could still record 24 points if it won its final game against Fresno Pacific (5-8-1, 2-5-1), resulting in a co-championship.
Dominican and Hawai’i Hilo only have one game each remaining and therefore could only achieve 22 and 21 points respectively.
Wednesday’s game at Point Loma is scheduled for a noon kickoff.