Men's Soccer News | Peninsula College Athletics

Men's Soccer News

Jake Hughes

PORT ANGELES - The Jake Hughes era of Pirate soccer begins this summer when the Peninsula College men's soccer team opens at the 2017 NWAC Friendlies Aug. 24-25 at the Starfire Soccer Complex in Tukwila.

The storied soccer program's fourth head coach helped the Pirates win an NWAC championship in 2015, and he helped them reach the quarterfinals last year, both years as an assistant coach. The former Pirate standout, who picked up an NWAC championship ring himself as a player back in 2010, is now directing the program.

The Peninsula men began training on Aug. 5 and will take to the pitch for the first time under Coach Hughes in a scrimmage at the University of Victoria on Sunday at 1 p.m.

"This group is packed with great characters and quality," Hughes said of his 2017 roster. "They have really pushed themselves through the first week and I'm excited to see them develop as Peninsula College players."

The Pirates return four sophomores in North Region most valuable player Cesar Gervacio of San Jose, California; North All-Star Juan Carrillo, also of San Jose; North All-Conference Joey Hollimon of Las Vegas, Nevada; and Sergio Gonzalez-Reyes of Reno, Nevada.

Hughes' first recruiting class includes Jesse Salgado of Port Angeles, Josiah Urique of Sequim, Darius Ochoa of Seattle, Jose Serna of Yakima, Tristan Landry of Kenai, Alaska, Calvin Aguirre of Las Vegas, Yuki Lavoie of Kallua Kona, Hawaii, Joshua Lopez of Walkoloa, Hawaii, Peter Jones of British Columbia, Manuel Galiano of Italy, and three players from California, including Noah Scofield of Stockton, Michael Benito of Vista, and Stefanus Brown of Vista.

Jake Hughes

PORT ANGELES – Peninsula College’s nationally-ranked men’s soccer program may have a European feel next fall.

The College named Jake Hughes, formerly of London, England, as its’ new head men’s soccer coach.

Hughes takes over following the late-January resignation of Cale Rodriguez, who left for a coaching job at Cal State Irvine.

“It's a great honor to be named the head men's soccer coach at Peninsula College, a program that is truly special and a program that I owe a great deal to,” Hughes said. “I would like to thank Dr. Robins, Jack Huls, Rick Ross, Kanyon Anderson, Cale Rodriguez, and Tim Tucker for the opportunity to guide the Pirates into the next season. The support and dedication I have received is incredible and it speaks volumes about the quality of our program.”

Hughes won the job following a seven-week national search.

“It was a very competitive field of applicants,” said Rick Ross, Associate Dean for Athletics and Student Life. “We had 34 applications from coaches whose experience ranged from high school to college to professional, and from 19 states and three countries. There were some high powered coaches in the mix, including one with a national championship to his name, but it comes down to the right fit for our program, and that fit is Jake Hughes.”

“I am convinced that Jake has the passion, work ethic and experience to not only win more championships for Peninsula College, but also to recruit student athletes who will represent us well on and off the field,” Ross added. “As our interim coach this last month, the first player he signed is an outstanding young man from Port Angeles in Jesse Salgado. He’s also recruiting players from all over the west coast. Jake knows our program, he knows the NWAC, he knows the College, and he demonstrated to our committee, and our administration, that he not only really wants the job, but that he really wants to coach the players in our program, and that he really wants to live in our community.”

Cale Rodriguez and Dana De Vaughn

PORT ANGELES – The powerhouse men’s soccer program at Peninsula College, winners of eight straight league championships and four of the last seven Northwest Athletic Conference titles, is looking for a new head coach.

Following a brief but very successful two-year stint at Peninsula College, head coach Cale Rodriguez has accepted an assistant coaching position at University of California Irvine, a Division I program located near Rodriguez’s home town of Redlands.

 “I’ve been fortunate enough to receive an opportunity to continue my coaching career at University of California, Irvine,” Rodriguez said in an e-mail to the campus community. “For me, the most important part in my decision to come to the college was to know that the college was committed to athletics from all avenues. While there were many successes on the field, what people don't see and know about is the hard work, dedication, time and energy that the many people at the college from faculty, admin, foundation and general employees have invested into our students. I have met a lot of good people that share the same passion I have in helping young people achieve and pursue education. And it's the people at the college that make Peninsula truly a special place.”

Rodriguez, who was named North Division Coach of the Year last fall, won league titles both seasons and captured the Northwest Athletic Conference championship in 2015.

“Cale did an outstanding job for us and we wish him all the best as he continues his coaching career at the Division I level,” said Rick Ross, Associate Dean for Athletics and Student Life.

PORT ANGELES – Peninsula College Freshman Cesar Gervacio was named the Northwest Athletic Conference North Region Most Valuable Player, 10 of his teammates also earned honors, and head coach Cale Rodriguez was named North Region Coach of the Year.

As region champions, Peninsula was allowed eight nominations for the All-Star Team and the other five coaches in the North voted all eight onto the All-Star Team. They will play in the NWAC Men’s All-Star Game at noon, Sunday, at Starfire Stadium and coach Rodriguez, a second-year coach who won his first NWAC Region Coach of the Year award, will coach them.

That All-Star list is headed up by Gervacio, Peninsula’s leading scorer who won Most Valuable Player honors. He will be joined by Juan Carrillo, Marlon Nava, Jason Ramos, Jose Soto, Demar Stewart and Salvador Vargas.

Soto also will be honored with an NWAC Academic Excellence award.

Finally, Alex Ramos, Miguel Valderrama and Joey Hollimon were named North Region All-Conference.

Adrian Benitez

PORT ANGELES – The Peninsula Pirates had one of the best men’s soccer seasons in the College’s storied history, officially going unbeaten with a 16-0-3 record, but ironically, they won’t be NWAC champions.

The NWAC’s top-ranked Pirates, who rose to No. 7 in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Division I Junior College Soccer Poll, tied Tacoma 2-2 through regulation and two overtime periods before coming up short in a wild penalty kick shootout to bring a sad end to Saturday’s NWAC Quarterfinal Playoff.

In the soccer world, that quarterfinal outcome is recorded as a tie, but the shootout sends fourth-ranked Tacoma on to the NWAC Final Four.

The Pirates, who won NWAC titles in 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2015, bowed out in the quarterfinal round this year - and it was a talented Tacoma team combined with some untimely injuries that spelled their demise.

Peninsula College soccer coaches

PORT ANGELES – The stage is set for Saturday’s Northwest Athletic Conference Quarterfinal Soccer Playoffs at Peninsula College, where the nationally-ranked soccer powerhouse Pirates will host Walla Walla in the women’s match and Tacoma in the men’s contest.

The winners will advance to the NWAC Final Four, set for Nov. 11-13 at Starfire Stadium in Tukwila.

The Pirate women and men, who have been a fixture at the Final Four for six years, winning six NWAC championships and a host of runner-up and third-place trophies, will have to get past two very talented teams on Saturday. Kickoff for the women’s match is noon and the men will follow at 2 p.m.

 “This is the last chance for our community to see two nationally-ranked junior college soccer teams play at home this season,” said Rick Ross, Associate Dean for Athletics and Student Life. “On paper, we’re the favorites, but none of the records and rankings matter in the post season. Both Walla Walla and Tacoma are talented and well coached. It’ll be intense.”

Both Pirate teams are ranked No. 1 in the NWAC. The men are ranked No. 7 in the latest National Soccer Coaches Association of American Junior College Division I Poll and the PC women moved up to No. 13 in the country.

Admission for Saturday's doubleheader is $4 for adults, $2 for seniors, veterans and youth ages 13-17, and free for children 12-under.

Peninsula College soccer sophomores

PORT ANGELES – The Northwest Athletic Conference’s top-ranked Peninsula College women and men closed out North Division play unbeaten Saturday, combining for 14 goals and a pair of shutouts over Edmonds.

It was a bittersweet day for 22 Pirate sophomores, who played their final regular season home matches on the pitch at Sigmar Field, but perhaps more sweet than bitter as the women crushed Edmonds 10-0 and the men followed with a decisive 4-0 win.

Peninsula earned a bye in the first round of the NWAC playoffs and will host a pair of quarterfinals on Saturday, Nov. 5. The Pirate women, who went 15-0 in North Division play to win their sixth straight division crown, will play at noon Saturday against the winner of Wednesday’s playoff between Tacoma and Walla Walla. The PC men, who finished 14-0-1 in conference play to claim their eighth straight league title, follow at 2 p.m. against the winner of a first-round match between Tacoma and the third-place finisher from the East.

A win on Saturday propels the Pirates into the NWAC Final Four, set for Nov. 11-13 at Starfire Stadium in Tukwila where the men have won four championships in the last six years, including 2015, and where the women have won a pair of Washington-Oregon community college titles.

BELLINGHAM – The Peninsula College women’s and men’s soccer teams, who continue to climb the national rankings, swept the Orcas at Whatcom Wednesday.

The Pirate women rolled to a 5-0 win over Whatcom and the men followed with a 1-0 nod over the North Division’s second-place Orcas.

Both Peninsula teams remain unbeaten in conference play with one match remaining. Saturday is “Sophomore Day” at Sigmar Field where the Pirates will honor 21 sophomores prior to their noon and 2 p.m. contests against Edmonds.

The Pirate men (13-0-1, 15-0-2) haven’t lost since last Halloween - at Edmonds. In two previous matches this season, the Pirates won 3-0 and 2-1.

Peninsula moved up to No. 8 in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Junior College Division I Poll and has been ranked No. 1 in the Northwest Athletic Conference poll all season.

The PC women (14-0-0, 15-1-1) have only one blemish on their record, a 2-1 non-conference loss to Highline back on Aug. 28. The Pirates moved up to No. 13 in the nation in the latest NSCAA poll and took over the No. 1 spot in the NWAC on Oct. 13.

Peninsula College North Division champions

MOUNT VERNON – The Peninsula College men joined the Pirate women as Northwest Athletic Conference North Division soccer champions Saturday, following a 3-0 win over Skagit Valley. Ironically, both wins came at Wally Sigmar Field.

The Peninsula women won their sixth straight division title at home last Monday, while the men won their eighth straight league title on a field at Skagit Valley College, also named after the late Dr. Wallace Sigmar, an NWAC Hall of Fame soccer coach and player at SVC who later served as Peninsula College President.

“I think Wally was smiling down on us,” said Rick Ross, Associate Dean for Athletics and Student Life. “He helped us launch the soccer program back in 2000 and I know he’d appreciate the dynasty it’s become.”

The league title was the eighth straight for the Pirate men, who are ranked No. 1 in the Northwest Athletic Conference and No. 9 in the latest National Soccer Coaches Association Junior College Division I Poll. Peninsula improved to 12-0-1 in conference play and 14-0-2 overall.

Coach Cale Rodriguez, in his second year at Peninsula, is defending an NWAC championship this season and points to Saturday’s league championship as a significant milestone toward their goal of repeating.

“I think what the group has accomplished this year, in terms of winning the division, can easily go unnoticed because of the history and success of the program,” Rodriguez said. “But I think certainly the division title was well earned. The boys have worked extremely hard to put themselves in this position.”

The Peninsula women, who also shutout Skagit Valley Saturday, 5-0, are also ranked No. 1 in the NWAC and are 16th in the national poll. The Pirates rolled to perfect 13-0 conference record, clinching their sixth straight North championship last Monday, and are 14-1-1 overall.

The pair of North Division championships not only pads the trophy case, but it also gives the Pirates an NWAC First Round playoff bye.

The Pirate women will face the winner of a Nov. 2 match against the second-place finisher from the West, currently Tacoma, and the third-place finisher from the East, currently Walla Walla. The quarterfinal playoff is scheduled for Nov. 5 at noon at Sigmar Field at Peninsula College.

The PC men, meanwhile, will follow the same bracket, playing the winner of a match that will likely feature Tacoma against either North Idaho or Walla Walla. Their quarterfinal will follow the women’s match on Nov. 5 at Peninsula.

Meanwhile, there is still some soccer to play. The PC women and men close out league play this week, travelling to Whatcom Wednesday and then hosting Edmonds for “Sophomore Day” at noon and 2 p.m. Saturday. Both Edmonds and Whatcom are in playoff contention.

“I think this group is still hungry to get better,” Rodriguez said. “Nothing changed on our end about how we will approach the remaining games of division play. We want to go out and perform at a high level and play good soccer. At the same time, we’ve put ourselves in a position to be able to utilize the depth we have and rest players who will need it.”

EVERETT – A Peninsula College win and a Whatcom loss on Wednesday propelled the Pirate men to within two points of clinching their eighth straight division championship.

The Pirates, who stopped Everett 5-0 under the lights at Kasch Park Wednesday evening, can claim the North Division title with a win at Skagit Valley on Saturday.

Peninsula (11-0-1, 13-0-2) leads the North with 34 points with three matches remaining. Whatcom (8-2-2, 9-3-2) trails with 26 points. Should the Orcas win out, they would finish the season with 35. The Northwest Athletic Conference’s top-ranked Pirates need only two points in three outings to nail down a home quarterfinal playoff on Nov. 5.

Edmonds (5-4-3, 8-5-3) trails in third place with 18 points following a 1-0 upset over Whatcom Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the NWAC’s No. 1 Peninsula women, who sewed up their sixth straight division title on Monday, stopped the Trojans 2-0 in the earlier match.

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