Ohlone men's soccer completed the season on a high note that was accentuated by a draw over Foothill, the second place team in the Region. The season started hopeful after two weeks of hard double day training in the summer mixed with a great team building camping trip at Manresa State Park.
The squad was looking forward to the first away match with an overnight stay in Shasta. In their first game, which featured 113 degrees of Northern California's Shasta Valley heat, almost immediately, the team looked dangerous as Greivin Pacheco Quesada, All Conference 1st Team Player, hit the post with his first shot of the season.
The Renegades were dangerous and moving the ball nicely. However, tragedy struck when center back Taylor Liedheisl was severely injured. The squad would settle for a tie, but Liedheisl's loss coupled with the team's newly recruited goalkeeper being declared ineligible forced several decisions and challenges on the new Renegade back line, and on the team's style of play.
A new goalkeeper in Cesar Olives was found, the conversion of a field player will always have challenges, but Olivas did a great job holding the team in place as a new keeper, Juan Martinez developed a couple of weeks into the season.
After a challenging start with several ties, but not a win until game six, Ohlone finally got into stride, beating several opponents including DeAnza, West Valley, and Chabot, but also playing solid matches against San Francisco, Cabrillo, Cañada, Foothill and others where draws or close games kept the Renegades in form and in the hunt for first place in division and a possible playoff berth until the last game of the season.
Coach Nordmo concluded,
"This team's results have been the culmination of three years hard work with our staff since we took over the Ohlone program. We were 7-4-3 in conference play this year and near finished first in the hardest division in Coast Conference.
We feel pretty good about our year. We have moved up over 20 positions in state rankings in one year. We have attracted a quality group of players and this year was highlighted by Greiven Pacheco Quesada finishing No. 7 in state with 17 goals and 9 assists and Dominic Hertz with 10 goals and 5 assists, ranked 26 in state, both players were freshman. This year, Quesada was flanked as a captain by another stellar performing freshman Raoul Chavez, center back.
We have a lot of strong returning players for 2012, we will only be moving five sophomores out this year. Ohlone has recently seen four players move on to four year colleges and hopes to see two or three more from this squad. We look forward to a strong team coming in this 2012 summer camp. And, expect to see some new freshman stars."
This year's squad was mix of players from around the bay area and beyond. As has been the case the last three years, the Ohlone team continues to add local players from Fremont, San Jose, Newark, Union City, Pleasanton, Hayward, San Lorenzo, even Chicago, Phoenix and beyond.
On the international side, players from Mexico, Costa Rica, England, Germany, Afghanistan, Ghana, Nigeria, Belgium and other nationalities have found Ohlone a great place to start their college playing career. The team had a true international flare and all the players got along with each other very well considering their diversity in cultures.
The team looks forward to a new field, which will be constructed on campus in the coming year or so.
Special acknowledgements go to Jonathan "Cookie" Santillan, sophomore, and Greiven Pacheco Quesada ,both named All Conference first team players, and to Joshua Weinert, sophomore, and Dominic Hertz, freshman, second team All Conference.
The team's final record was 8-7-6 and finished one place out of the top six that go on to play offs. "This is our third year in a row being close to going to the play offs. We feel 2012 will be our year!" said Coach Nordmo.
The team also says "goodbye" to three year, 1st Assistant Coach Nate Failing. Nate was also the goalkeeper coach, whose presence will be missed. Nate will be moving on to pursue his teaching career. Ohlone wishes Nate the best.
This web page is part of the official Ohlone College website. Any Ohlone College Athletics-related information that may appear on other websites is not official and may not be accurate.