May 19, 2019
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Worden is walk-off winner SSU Equestrian wins third Credo closes season with a win The Gryphon dominates the Eagles Credo wins softball rematch Cougars pounce on Tigers Boys lacrosse played last home game Vasquez digs in hard Seawolves bow out in round 1 of NCAAs Rancho plays last home game Titans secure division win! Rancho Senior Varsity and Coach Hotaling Ranch boys and girls played mixed Wait, I have it! “To be a Cougar, you have to have a heart of a Warrior” Technology High Seniors being honored Credo/Technology volley ball Cardenas makes good use of errors Honoring Tech High Lady Titans 24-hours of Lemons at Sonoma Raceway O’Daniel makes it back INDYCAR Showcase Honoring Tech High Lady Titans Phan, player of the year Rancho Cotate High School Credo over Tech, 8-1 Youth tennis camp is huge success Lacrosse holds free clinic Sept. 21 Advancing to the next round Anudokem leaps for the basket Technology High Cougars lose grip in final minutes Cougars score narrow win Panthers trounce Cougars A collision bound to happen Not where I wanted it Warriors struggled during semi-finals Warriors and All Star Blue RC Girls’ basketball won invitational Cougar seniors wave farewell RC Cougar fan facing surgery receives outpouring of support Heading for a goal Seschin and Curry watch with interest Scott goes up for a shot Roseland beats Tech High Titans A well-deserved win Parking lot rally brings families together A nice tight race Nguyen shows thanks Worden lays it up Heart break for Cougars Cougars trounce Pumas Rancho graduate signs with Holy Names University Laughlin makes a diving save Senior night for the volleyball team Cougars shutout Eagles Excitement for new football season  Cougars triumph over Vikings Cougars overcome Pumas Tech baseball, a learning season Move aside Man of Steel, we’ve got Ironman: Ironman triathlon returns to Sonoma County Getting it over the net Kuhlman watches the orb sail Lady Titan’s vs St. Helena Royals win bronze Cougar Ladies dominated Cougars stumble in overtime Winding up for an out Rancho ends losing streak Girls played last game Going for a goal Misi ready for the big hit Great job Lady Titans Sandoval scores against Piner Roby goes high Wildcats beat Seawolves Rancho stumbles against Terra Linda Race to the stars Seniors were defeated by the staff Hayes comes in first Titan’s vs. Anderson Valley Balint, pitcher for the U of Oregon signing autographs Ca. School for the Deaf wins 72-60 RP prepares for opening day Parker reaches for a basket Oppenheim, Sarudiansky, Nudell Named All-PacWest Local playing with Ducks Northern California locals round out SCCA Championship Runoffs Rancho girls beat El Molino Shots don’t win the game SSU briefs Titans’ baseball: Learning respect for the game Game on home turf SSU Sports Briefs Cross country standouts Mata player of the match 8th Annual John’s march against Stomach Cancer Titans lose to Wildcats SSU Track and Field season opener 15 hits fuel SSUs 11 run victory SSU Smith blocks A world of difference Scoring the final goal Tech High started a blaze Getting better all the time Cougars fought and lost hard Strong showing at Hornet Invitational Tech Titans: A Band of brothers and sisters Credo defeats Tech 15 to 3 39 years for championship Gryphons advance to semi-finals Seawolves place first Morie with determination Rancho NBL Redwood Champions After the last game of the season Seawolves top Jacks in series final two games A much-needed win Cars and coffee at the Speedway Pumas defeat Cougars Credo out on the road next week Seawolves sweep over Cal State East Bay Backhanding very nicely Rancho Cotate defeats Santa Rosa Cougar win breaks 39-year dry spell Finished up with a win Tech High Seniors honored Tam defeats Cougars Tigers sweep it all! I am the leader of the pack Jaguars crush Cougars Exhibition match brings out the stars Cougars march toward playoffs Cougars finish season with a win Playing the last home game Seawolves earn team ethics and sportsmanship award Rancho beat Ross Valley Cronin is safe A solar car will be on the track Rain does not stop Credo softball Cougars' winning streak continues Tomales defeats Tech High Coyotes bring down Titans Credo stumbles in overtime Gray battles to the hoop Racing begins March 9th Is the ball in there? Finding victory in defeat Tech High Reim swimming Roseland Beats Tech High Cougars remain undefeated RCHS girls’ basketball team honored their seniors Cougars rain on Lobos’ parade First year gymnasts come in third Will I do it? Rancho alumnus signs with New York Red Bulls Wildcats beat Cougars Healdsburg takes the win Martinez has a powerful kick Hayman flips it up Tech High doesn’t have enough steam Lambrecht puts on pressure Alfaro makes a hit

Cougars clash with Cardinals

  • Dimitri Johnson, a sophomore at Rancho Cotate High School, fights to get past a member of the Cardinal Newman's lacrosse team during their away game March 20. Newman defeated Rancho 7-4. This was Rancho's first league game of the season. Photo by Jane Peleti

By: Joshua Farestveit-Moore
March 29, 2019

A difficult season got a little harder last Wed., March 20th for the Rancho Cotate Cougars when they lost, 7-4, to their rivals the Cardinal Newman Cardinals in an away league game held at Cardinal Newman High School. 

It was the first league game of the Cougars’ season, but not their first loss—not by a long shot. They’re currently sitting at 0-7 for the season. Low recruitment numbers and a swath of graduations shrunk the Cougars’ roster in both age and numbers, which forced Rancho Cotate to fold its varsity and junior varsity teams into one. Much of the starting lineup for the Cougars are freshmen and sophomores, and the league matches them against athletes who are two to three years their senior, meaning their opponents are both larger and more experienced. 

It’s an unfortunate combination. The Cougars have struggled this year and the string of losses are beginning to take their toll. Their coach, Tory Hotaling, feared that defeat might become a self-fulfilling prophecy if the losing streak continues for much longer. 

“We’ve got to get a win here,” Hotaling said. “We’re right on the edge. I think that once we get the first one it’ll help them turn the corner and get some confidence because the momentum is killing us right now. We’ve got to figure out how to turn this around.” 

Despite these disadvantages, the Cougars started the match off strong. They took the early lead in the first quarter with a pair of goals and yielded only a single in turn. It was a slim edge, but it was still an edge, and the Cougars clung to it tenaciously with a stalwart defense that helped shore up for their offense’s lackluster performance. 

It was the Cougar goalkeeper, Raymond Nixon, who served as the keystone of his team’s defensive strategy. Throughout the course of the game, Nixon blocked 35 of the Cardinals’ shots on goal—that’s over double the national average of 14. It was an incredible performance and one that preserved the Cougars’ lead through the second quarter. 

“We’re definitely coming together. We’re bonding as a team,” Nixon said. “It’s just taking a little longer than we want it to. We’ve got a lot of hurt players right now and that’s killing us.” But then late in the third quarter the Cougars’ small reserve of fresh players began to take its toll. The defenders grew sluggish and slow to respond to the constant press of the Cardinals’ offense. 

It was Cardinal Peyton Dove who found the first hole in the Cougars’ defensive pattern. His teammates swirled around the backside while Dove wormed his way up the center. They passed to him. In a flash, Dove took the shot through two Cougar defenders that moved up to stop him, but they were too slow. The ball passed over their shoulders and into the net. 

Dove went on to score another three times using versions of the play over the next four minutes of game time before the Cougars could shore up the hole. By then, though, the damage had been done. 

The Cardinals had stolen the lead and the game. 

“We are young and we’re not executing on offense. It makes us rely on our defense. They’re tired. In these conditions, in this long grass? It’s even worse,” Hotaling said. 

Unfortunately for the Cougars, their opponents aren’t going to get any easier. They go up next against the Casa Grande Gauchos Fri., March 29. The Gauchos are currently undefeated this season.