The Crowder Roughriders might have taken a tumble from the No. 10 spot in the newest NJCAA Division I national rankings when they were released Monday after the ‘Riders took a 4-1 loss Saturday in their Region 16 opener against Jefferson at Roughrider Soccer Field.
(Crowder fell out of the rankings to the receiving votes category and Jefferson moved into the No. 18 spot.)
The Vikings controlled the match almost from the very start Saturday and they built a 3-1 halftime lead. The ‘Riders were fortunate because the Vikings just missed on at least three more goals.
Crowder — 7-2 overall and 0-1 Region 16 — returns home Tuesday, weather permitting, for a match against Rose State (Oklahoma). Crowder and Rose State were originally scheduled to play Aug. 25, but rain washed it out and created a rescheduling. Rose State owns a 3-4 overall mark.
On Saturday, Jefferson’s Antonio Aranda and Erik Rajoy netted unassisted goals for the Vikings’ 2-0 lead. Then, in the 35th minute, a few minutes after Rajoy’s goal, Crowder put together its best offensive charge and last season’s leading goal scorer, sophomore Daniel Doherty, booted a ball past Jefferson goalkeeper Evan Witte for a 2-1 score.
Rather than build momentum off the Doherty goal, Crowder saw Jefferson’s Pablo Ruiz score a goal a few minutes before halftime.
Jefferson’s Emmanuel Somule closed out the scoring in the 70th minute.
The Vikings have won four straight matches, including their first two Region 16 contests. Jefferson blanked St. Louis 3-0 on Wednesday; St. Louis has been the Region 16 powerhouse in recent years.