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2:39 AM Wed, Nov. 21st

JuCo Soccer: Yavapai needs one win to reach nationals

District tournament starts Friday

Yavapai College’s men’s soccer team needs only a win Friday in Prescott to advance to the NJCAA Division I National Championship tournament, which the Roughriders will host Nov. 13-15, 17 and 18, at Mountain Valley Park Amphitheater in Prescott Valley.

On Tuesday afternoon, the college announced the pairings for the four-team NJCAA West District Tournament here, which will include Region I champion Yavapai and runner-up Pima, as well as Region VIII champ Otero (Colorado) and Region XVIII champ Snow (Utah).

The district tournament kicks off at noon Friday and will conclude with the district championship match at 3 p.m. Saturday at Ken Lindley Field in Prescott. Admission into the three-game tournament is $5 per adult and $3 per student. Children ages 6 and younger get in free.

On Friday in the West District semifinals, Otero (11-5-2 overall record) will face NJCAA No. 8-ranked Pima (16-3-3) at noon, followed by Snow (11-6-1) versus No. 5 Yavapai (19-2-3) at 3 p.m. The winners will play for the West District championship.

The two squads that advance to the West District title match will receive automatic berths into the 12-team National Tournament. However, the season will end for the two teams that lose in the district semis. Seven-time national champion Yavapai last qualified for Nationals in 2013.

On Oct. 28, the Roughriders beat Pima, 2-1, to capture the program’s 22nd NJCAA Region I championship since 1990. This fall, Yavapai leads all of NJCAA Division I in goals scored with 120. That mark is second only to the Roughriders’ 1993 squad, which owns the program record with 134 goals scored.

Doug Cook is a sports reporter for The Daily Courier. Follow him on Twitter at @dougout_dc. Email dcook@prescottaz.com or call 928-445-3333, ext. 2039.