Pima Community College sports

Pima Notebook: Ranked men’s, women’s soccer teams each off to 3-0 starts

Some information for this report from the Pima media relations department. A total of 29 athletes from Southern Arizona high schools are mentioned.

The No. 11-ranked Pima’s women’s team dominated Mesa with a 6-0 win Saturday, scoring four goals in the second half, exemplifying their season.

Freshman Mari Acosta of Sahuarita scored two goals in the game. She put the Aztecs on the board in the 8th minute with a cross-assist from fellow freshman Savannah Gutierrez of Tucson High.

Acosta capped off the game with goal in the 81st minute with a shot just outside the box. Sophomore Seti Valencia of Sunnyside set up her shot.

Freshman Delaney Buntin of Cienega found the back of the net on back-to-back occasions.

Pima is ranked No. 11 nationally with its 3-0 start (Pima photo)

She made it 4-0 with her shot in the 68th minute with an assist from sophomore Litycia Espinoza of Sahuarita.

Buntin scored again in the 75th minute to make it 5-0 when she hit a shot in the box after being set up by freshman Caitlyn Maher of Catalina Foothills.

Sophomore Kaitlyn Bassett of Sabino scored her goal 11 minutes into the second half with an assist from fellow sophomore Alyssa Kopach of Ironwood Ridge.

The Aztecs had 10 shots on goal and sophomore Angelina Amparano of Salpointe finished with three saves.

Pima returns to Aztec Soccer Field part of the Chapman Automotive Sports Complex on Tuesday when they host Chandler-Gilbert at 5:30 p.m., before the men’s teams for both schools play.

Acosta leads the Aztecs with nine points (team-high four assists and an assist).

Amparano was named ACCAC Goalkeeper of the Week for the week of Aug. 23-29 after she finished with seven saves in Pima’s 2-1 win over previously No. 1-ranked Phoenix College.

Men’s soccer

The third-ranked Pima College men’s soccer team appears headed to another memorable seasons with a 3-0 start following Saturday’s win over Mesa. The Aztecs scored two goals in each half as they beat the Thunderbirds 4-1.

Four different players scored including freshman Jacob Garcia, a former Walden Grove standout who led the Red Wolves to the 4A state title match last season. Garcia also provided across-pass assist to sophomore Brian Vu of Rincon/University for a goal at the 51st minute to give Pima a 3-0 lead.

Pima tries to go to 4-0 on Tuesday (Pima photo)

Garcia then scored his goal in the 53rd minute with an assist from sophomore Rramon Isaku of Switzerland to make it 4-0.

Three Sunnyside graduates — Ulysses Torres, Jesus Virgen and Manuel Quiroz — got Pima’s scoring going.

Torres, a sophomore, scored the first goal on a header in the 21st minute with an assist from Virgen, a freshman. Quiroz, a sophomore, put Pima up 2-0 in the 37th minute with a penalty kick goal.

Sophomore Juan Suarez of Desert View had five saves, and freshman Aurelio Bernal of Cholla played the final eight minutes at the net.

Salpointe graduate Francisco Manzo leads the Aztecs with six points (two goals and two assists).

The Aztecs return to the West Campus Aztec Soccer Field (part of the Chapman Automotive Sports Complex) on Tuesday when they host Chandler-Gilbert. Game time is 8:00 p.m.

Women’s volleyball

The Aztecs’ women’s volleyball team, which qualified for the national tournament last season, begins ACCAC play on Wednesday when they host Phoenix College at the West Campus Aztec Gymnasium. First set begins at 7:00 p.m.

Pima (3-4) is coming off a four-set win Saturday in a non-conference match against Mott (Mich.) Community College.

The Aztecs defeated the Bears (5-5) 25-9, 25-21, 21-25, 25-15 at Scottsdale Community College.

Pima sophomore setters Karla Soto of Nogales and Isabella Jacome, daughter of Pima baseball coach Ken Jacome, combined for 34 assists and 11 aces. Soto finished with 18 assists, seven digs and six aces while Jacome posted 16 assists and five aces.

Nogales grad Karla Soto and Isabella Jacome, daughter of Pima baseball coach Ken Jacome, are two of Pima’s top players (Pima photo)

Sophomore Jessica Bright-Schade of Safford fell a dig short of a double-double as she had 12 kills to go along with nine digs.

Sophomore Kaylee Moseley of Marana was a strong defensive presence at the net as she contributed with eight kills and five blocks. Sophomore Aydalis Felix of Rincon/University had 15 digs.

“It is always great to get a win against a good team. I felt we did a great job of controlling the pace of the match with our serve,” Pima volleyball coach Dan Bithell said. “We had some nice leadership from both of our setters today and that really helped us through a couple tough moments. We have a lot to improve still, and hopefully we will get a bit sharper for our first conference match on Wednesday.”

Lina Kassimatis, a freshman who was teammate of Isabella Jacome’s at Albuquerque (N.M.) Volcano Vista High School, leads the Aztecs with 51 kills. Jacome and Kassimatis lead the Aztecs with 27 sets.

Jacome and Soto each have 12 service aces to lead the team. Felix has a team-high 67 digs and Haley Duncan of Walden Grove has a team-best 16 blocks.

Women’s cross country

The women’s cross country team competed in its first fall season event since Oct. 25, 2019, when they took part in the George Kyte Invitational on Saturday at Buffalo Park in Flagstaff.

The Aztecs finished the 2.5-mile Open Division race in fourth place with a total of 118 points.

Sahuaro grad Megan Rasey and Sahuarita grad Marissa Lopez were Pima’s top two finishers in its first meet (Pima photo)

Freshman Megan Rasey of Sahuaro was the top finisher for Pima as she took 33rd place out of 52 competitors with a time of 20 minutes, 00.4 seconds. Fellow freshman Marissa Lopez of Sahuarita finished behind her in 34th place at 20:18.2.

Freshman Candice Pocase of Santa Rita crossed the finish line at 41st with a time of 21:49.0 and freshman Mykayla Tarwater of Tucson High was 42nd at 22:04.4.

Men’s cross country

The men’s cross country team also competed in the George Kyte Invitational, its first fall season event since Nov. 9, 2019.

The Aztecs finished the 4.5-mile Open Division race in fifth place with a total of 134 points.

Avery Dylla of Ironwood Ridge was the top finisher for Pima in its first meet (Pima photo)

Freshman Avery Dylla of Ironwood Ridge was the top Pima finisher as he took 29th place out of 72 competitors with a time of 26 minutes, 12.2 seconds. Freshman Emmanuel Corral of Pusch Ridge was 31st with a time of 26:16.7.

Freshman Chalen Lozano of Marana placed 36th at 26:36.9 and freshman Brendan Torres of Empire crossed the finish line in 47th at 27:38.7.

The men’s and women’s teams will next compete in the Desert Cactus Race on Sept. 18 in Tucson. Location and time is to be determined.

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