DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Pima Community College captured the NJCAA soccer national championship in a double overtime thriller when Hugo Kametani found the net in a 2-1 win over Barton Community College Saturday.
Defensively, both Barton and Pima were set and ready. Pima had the footwork that made Barton think more on their feet, and Barton kept the hustle going which then created a first half of the players running up and down the field.
There were a lot of missed opportunities that even made the crowd express a few “ooh” and “ah”s with missed goals and just a few seconds that were needed with the ball.
Going into the second half both teams kept their game consistent, until a penalty goal by Barton’s midfielder, Tevin Rochester, put Barton on the board within 15 minutes of the game.
Pima kept the persistence going until a red card was issued to Pima’s midfielder, Javier Vega, after he stepped on a player intentionally.
Pima showed some backlash from the incident until Isaias German, Pima’s midfielder, had seen an opportunity to bring his team out of the funk and scored a goal tying the game 1-1 with less than 15 minutes left.
The pressure was on and the crowd could tell with everyone up on their toes waiting to see if Barton or Pima can overcome and score or if overtime will be commenced.
Adrenaline was pumped into each team as if the game was just starting as Barton was bringing the hustle and Pima came close to scoring, but slide tackles prevented them from moving up on the board.
Before the players knew it, the countdown of 10 seconds left started and no one scored leading it to overtime.
As the ten minutes of overtime kept ticking by, the fans got more on the edge of their seat letting the anticipation of who will take home the trophy get to them.
The teams kept the hustle going and the first overtime came to an end. Time kept on ticking, and the crowd started wondering if they will have to take out their blankets for some Saturday night soccer under the lights.
It was then that Hugo Kametani, Pima’s midfielder, hit a shot that seemed too good to be true until the ball hit the net and Pima players ran onto the field in celebration. Kametani made the goal that brought home a championship to the Aztecs.