The Western Nebraska Community College men's soccer team received two, second half goals from Lawan Abary in leading the Cougars to a 4-1 win over Otero Junior College in Region IX South division play Friday at Landers Soccer Complex.
The Cougars will look to stay on the winning side when they face Trinidad State Junior College in another Region IX South contest Saturday at the Landers Complex. Trinidad earned an 1-0 win over Northeastern Junior College on Friday. Kick off at the pitch is set for 3 p.m. for the men's contest. The women's contest kicks off at 1 p.m.
Owen Parra said this was a big win for the Cougar men.
"I think this is a pretty big win. It definitely helped all our motivation," the Scottsbluff graduate said. "We all expect to battle and I am glad we came out on top."
This was one match where the Cougars played as a team from start to finish. The Cougars scored the first goal of the contest five minutes into the contest on a penalty kick by Ramses Atahualpa.
"We all like the performance. Everyone played good, even the subs that came in," Parra said "We tried harder than usual so that is pretty good."
After Atahualpa's penalty kick, neither scored again as the defenses took over until late in the first half when Kearney's Leonardo Palomo took a corner kick from Atahualpa and pushed it into the net with 32 seconds to play in the half.
The second half was dominated by WNCC's defense and offense. Abary scored the first of his goals just a minute and 15 seconds into the half as he took a pass from Thomas Franze for the 3-0 lead. Abary made it 4-0 with 20 minutes to play taking a pass from Silvio Xavier.
Otero's lone goal came from Kevin Chavez with just under 10 minutes to play.
Parra said the defense played well.
"The defense was great all day," he said. "I mean it was an excellent performance from them. Their goal was a lack of concentration."
WNCC had five shots on goal compared to two for Otero. The Cougars managed four corner kicks while the Rattlers had two.
WNCC, 4-1 overall and 1-0 in conference play, will face a tough Trinidad squad Saturday. Parra said his team has to come out with even more intensity against the Trojans.
"We have to come out with even more intensity tomorrow," he said. "All that matters is the work rate on the team. Today is a good example. We worked really hard and we got the win."