The Cochise College Lady Apaches won the Arizona Community College Athletic Conference (ACCAC) championship Saturday, beating Pima College 1-0 on Sophomore Day at Cochise College.
The Lady Apaches, 8-4-2 overall 7-0-2 in conference, still have one more conference game remaining this week hosting Scottsdale Community College Wednesday, Oct. 23, at 2 p.m. at Cochise College.
The Region 1 playoffs begin on Tuesday, Oct. 29. With the conference championship secured, the Lady Apaches will have a first-round bye and will play an opponent from the opening round game at 2 p.m. on Halloween Day, Oct. 31. Cochise has not been in the postseason since 2013 when it went in as a four seed.
As expected, Saturday’s match with Pima was a battle from the start. Both teams had shots on goal but neither team could score.
Finally, with five minutes left in the match, Leticia Seabra scored for Cochise off a Maria Azarias assist.
Pima outshot Cochise, 10-7, this match. Former DHS goalie, Brianna Guzman, who two weeks ago was the NJCAA National Goalie of the Week, had eight saves.
Two nights earlier, in a 0-0 overtime tie in Yuma with Arizona Western, she had six saves.
First year coach Bobby Peters said after Saturday’s win, he was extremely proud of his players and the way they battled this week.
“We had two extremely tough matches this week,” he said. “All the credit goes to these girls. They quickly bought into the system. It’s really their victory.”
The coach said Seabra is a sophomore team captain that comes to Cochise from Sao Paulo, Brazil.
“She’s a player,” he said. “She understands the game. It’s like having a coach on the field. Whenever things are breaking down, half the time I don’t have to say anything, she fixes it. Today she took advantage of the moment and placed it right in the net.”
“I had just about two seconds before I had to take the shot,” Seabra said. “I’m glad it went in.”
Peters also had some praise for his goalie.
“Bri is a fantastic keeper,” he said. “She has stepped up some many times for us this year. I’m very happy we got her (to come here).”
Guzman said both these matches this past week were intense, but the defense on her team is tough and she knew they would do what was expected of them to help Cochise.
Guzman added she is somewhat surprised by all the success her team has had this year.
“I knew we had some talent, but to accomplish what we have (so far) this year is amazing,” she said. “We’re not done yet.”