Rio Hondo College sophomore Kent Mertins scored a team-high four goals but it wasn't enough for the Roadrunners as they suffered a 14-9 South Coast Conference loss at El Camino College on Wednesday.
It was an evenly matched contest between the Roadrunners and Warriors, but El Camino took advantage of Rio Hondo fouls to score three goals with a man-up advantage.
Mertins' goal at the 1:37 mark in the first tied up the contest before Nate Griffith scored at the first quarter buzzer to give ECC a 4-3 lead.
Rio Hondo jumped ahead 5-4 in the second thanks to a goal by Daniel Lozano at 5:01. But El Camino responded with five unanswered goals to take a commanding 9-5 lead. Mertins scored with 10 seconds left in the second to cut El Camino's lead to 9-6 at halftime.
Rio Hondo got as close at 11-8 after Mertins' final goal in the third. And El Camino outscored Rio Hondo 2-0 in the fourth quarter to close out its victory.
Austin O'Dea added three goals for Rio Hondo while Sebastian Bello and Lozano added single goals. Hennessey Avila made 12 saves in goal for the Roadrunners.
The loss dropped Rio Hondo to 2-17 overall and 0-5 in conference play. The Roadrunners will look to snap a 10-game losing streak on Friday (Oct. 27) when they will face Grossmont College at 9 a.m. in the opening game of the two-day Saddleback College Tournament. Rio Hondo is also scheduled to play Santa Monica College at 4 p.m.