By Mari Kneisel/COC Sports Information
College of the Canyons had nine players receive All-Western State Conference, South Division accolades after finishing second in the conference before making a postseason run in the 3C2A Southern California Regional playoffs.
Canyons saw four sophomore players named to the All-WSC, South Division First-Team including Natalia Zuluaga Ramirez, Alyssa Edwards, Jessie Bonsness and Laurel Durkin.
Zuluaga-Ramirez started all of her 22 games and was essential in controlling the pace of the game from the midfield. The sophomore produced seven goals and had two assists finishing the season with 16 points.
Edwards was critical in her role up top , striking a total of 11 goals across her 21 games started. Her foot skills and ability to distribute earned her the highest number of goals on the team with three assists. A couple of those goals were vital to COC’s journey in the regular season and post-season, one coming late in the season against Citrus College to prevent a loss with 30 seconds left to play and another that propelled the Cougars into the second round of the 3C2A Regional Playoffs against No. 8 Allan Hancock College.
On the defensive side, Bonsness found a steady rhythm as an outside back, but worked her way to the front line offensively to score four goals and just as many assists across her 22 games. Bonsness was instrumental in the first round of the 3C2A Regional Playoffs scoring two of her four goals, one in overtime, to give Edwards the chance for the game-winner.
Durkin held down the backline throughout her 21 games. The center-back’s calm but efficient manner was crucial in moving the ball across the back line and through to the front. Durkin was also credited with one assist.
Ashley Striegel, Ryan Shepherd and Vivian Martinez were among those named to the All-WSC, South Division Second-Team.
Striegel’s infectious energy in the midfield produced a total of 10 goals and four assists on the season, with three of those goals as game winners. Across her 21 starts, the freshman worked for a total of 49 shots, 30 of which were on frame.
Shepherd set the tone on the front line, also working for 10 goals of her own and three assists. The forwards strong energy brought about five game-winning goals and finished the season with 23 points.
Another integral piece to the backline, Martinez was solid for the Cougars as a center back. She finished the season with one assist and seven shots on goal, 13 total across her 22 games.
Honorable Mention selections included sophomores Hazel Saucedo and Lizeth Gutierrez.
Saucedo stood in net for the Cougars in 19 games, producing 16 starts where she worked for 44 saves with 20 goals against. The sophomore goalkeeper finished the season with an 8-5-3 record, recording two solo shut outs.
In the midfield, Gutierrez appeared in 22 games, with 21 starts, as the sophomore found the back of the net twice and earned a team-high five assists.
Canyons worked through the first round of the 3C2A Regional Playoffs before falling in the second round to No. 1 seed Chaffey College.
The Lady Cougars finished the season with a 14-5-4 overall record going 10-1-3 in the WSC, South Division and finishing runner up to Santa Monica College.
Stay up to date on all this season’s action by visiting the College of the Canyons Athletic department or following on social media at @COCathletics on X, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.