Maria-Elena Garcia becomes the second member of the Barton Community College women's soccer team to earn Jayhawk Conference weekly honors being recently named the Goalkeeper of the Week for her efforts in two Lady Cougar victories last week. Garcia joins Jennifer Mendez to earn the honor for the women's program this season after Mendez donned the award the week prior after scoring her second hat trick of the season.
With a strong defensive line preventing zero shots on goal during Garcia's fifty-eight minutes of play last Tuesday's 7-1 win at Kansas City Kansas Community College, the Wichita sophomore came up large on Saturday keeping the net clean with seven saves in the Lady Cougars' 3-0 upset victory at Dodge City Community College avenging an earlier season loss to the Conquistadors.
The first round win at Dodge City propels Garcia and the Lady Cougars to Barton's fourth straight trip to the Region VI semifinal taking place Thursday at Topeka's Hummer Park. Barton, 9-6 on the season, will have the daunting task of trying to knock-off top seeded and No. 6 nationally ranked 16-2 Butler Community College. Kick-off is scheduled for 11:00 a.m. with the winner advancing to Friday's 10:00 a.m. championship against the winner of No. 14 Johnson County Community College and nationally receiving votes Hutchinson Community College.
In the season's only meeting with Butler, the Lady Cougars couldn't control a first half onslaught by the Grizzlies in digging a 5-0 deficit in the eventual 6-0 loss in El Dorado back on September 30. History will also not be on the side of Barton as the Lady Cougars have lost five straight to Butler and dating back to 2009. However, the Lady Cougars do own a 2-1 neutral field edge including their last win and playoff meeting against the Grizzlies coming in the semifinal round as Barton ended Butler's season 1-0 on the same field as Thursday's upcoming game.