COSTA MESA -- The Orange Coast College men's soccer team overcame the heat and a relentless Chaffey College squad and pulled out a 2-1 nonconference win over the visiting Panthers on Friday at the OCC Soccer Complex.
With the match tied at a goal apiece, Nick Cardenas fed a nice pass to teammate Carlos Ambrosi and the freshman forward did not make a mistake, ripping his shot into the back of the net with 11 minutes remaining in the match, giving OCC (1-0-2) its first win of the season against a Panther team (2-1-0) that had outscored its opponents, 10-4, through the first two matches of the season.
Both teams had solid scoring opportunities in the first half, but it was the Pirates who first found success. In the 38th minute, midfielder Vitor Gameiro sent a perfect pass into open space, where teammate Achref Beldi caught up to it and ripped a shot on goal. Chaffey goalkeeper Jafet Chaves (eight saves) made the initial stop, but the ball found its way back to Beldi, who slipped the rebound into the empty net to put Coast in front, 1-0.
It stayed that way through the remainder of the first half, but Chaffey came out with more life in the second half and evened the match just two minutes into the final 45 as a long throw-in by Brandon Setaghian-Sangbarani rattled around in front of the OCC goal area, where Gustavo Chavez corralled the ball and beat OCC keeper Sina Shahnazari to tie things up at a goal apiece.
Shahnazari was strong in goal for the Pirates, notching six saves, including five strong stops in the second half, keeping the match tied until Ambrosi's winner late in the contest.
The Pirates will return to action on Wednesday at home against Rio Hondo, beginning at 3 p.m.