The Thunderbirds took the field with a purpose against South Mountain Community College.
The Thunderbirds have struggled all season in athletic matches where the ball couldn’t find the back of the net. They would have had a different record, but the game against Arizona Western was stopped at halftime due to lightning. They were 1-4-1 coming into the match against the Cougars.
Ivan Medina, No. 8, was the first Thunderbird to put one in the back of the Cougars net at 6:01, assisted by Panos Sioris, No. 18. Medina followed his first goal with a second, assisted by No. 27, Ghanen Lilly-Nolan. Kevin Olivarez had an unassisted goal almost four minutes later to put the Thunderbirds ahead 3-0 with approximately 31 minutes left in the first half. Coach Ronan took starting keeper Joshua Stewart out at 39:22 and sent in Brandon Alvarez to take over.
Ghanen Lilly-Nolan got a second assist at the 22:13, when Connor Glennen, No. 15, put another ball in the Cougar net.
After halftime was complete, the two teams took the field and 2:15 into the second half No. 15, unassisted, put another ball past the Cougar keeper. This goal gave the Thunderbirds a 5-0 lead. Coach Ronan gave his third keeper time, putting him in at the 65:45 mark in the match.
South Mountain changed their keeper to Jovani Giron three seconds earlier. Arturo Molina, No. 3, put the final goal of the match away, unassisted, at 72:01.
Coach Ronan said, “Every single person on our roster got into the game. Everybody played hard and played well. Obviously, we needed a win and we got one.” The Thunderbirds outpaced the Cougars with 14-7 shots on goal (SOG), Corner Kicks 6-3, Off sides 9-2. Fouls were close,9-6, but two Cougars received yellow cards, Aldo Skewes and Carlos Felix.