Owls into Playoffs
Both OIT soccer teams will compete in the CCC Championships
By Amy Morikawa, Staff Writer
After a successful regular season for both squads, the Oregon Tech soccer teams have secured themselves spots in the Cascade Collegiate Conference (CCC) Championships. The CCC Championship is a postseason tournament that features the top 8 in the league where the victorious team earns a berth to the NAIA National Tournament.
The Lady Owls will enter the tournament as the #3 seed and will be facing the #6 College of Idaho, Yotes. As a top seed in the CCC Championships, the women have the advantage and will be playing a lower seed.
The last time this group of Owls faced off against the Yotes, OIT prevailed as the winners with a 2-0 shutout. The women’s 2018 campaign has emerged unprecedented for the squad as this year’s record includes the most conference wins in program history.
Captain Ellie Quercia attributed a lot of this season’s success to how the team has continued to build upon the vision Head Coach, Brandon Porter, had set for the team. “Last year Brandon coached us up to be defensive first,” says Quercia, “and now that we have a solid defense, we’ve now been able to focus on attacking more this year.”
The men find themselves as the #8 team and will play the Raiders of Southern Oregon, the undefeated and reigning conference champions. As an exciting conclusion to their season, the Owls secured their spot as the last team in the CCC Championship with a dominating 4-0 win on the road in Montana against the University of Providence. In their last encounter with their travel partner, the men’s team battled to an 0-2 loss.
“We’re all bought into our coach’s vision for our team.” Starting goalkeeper Gerardo Skewes commented on the group’s unique chemistry and how it has allowed them to capitalize by finding the back of their opponent’s net when it comes to game time.
The reigning conference champions in the regular season, the Eastern Oregon women’s team and the Southern Oregon men’s team, have also clinched a place in the NAIA National Tournament. On the men’s side, Southern Oregon will be headed to Nationals and Eastern Oregon has also clinched a spot on the women’s side. If the OIT men’s team wins the CCC Championships, they will play at the OC Great Park Soccer Stadium in Irvine, California from Nov. 26 - Dec. 1, 2018. If the OIT women’s team wins, they will be playing at the Orange Beach Sportsplex in Orange Beach, Alabama.