Zion Hartzler and Hakim Hemada were selected to the NJCAA All-Region XVI team. Zion was selected to the NJCAA Region XVI First Team. While at MCC-Blue River, Zion played in 35 games over two seasons, scored 10 goals and provided 8 assists. He was also a team captain his sophomore year. Hakim Hemada was selected to the NJCAA Region XVI Second Team. Hakim, a freshman from Egypt, played in 16 games for the Trail Blazers. Both Zion and Hakim played defense and were instrumental to the Trail Blazers five team shutouts and 1-0 Region XVI Quarter-final win over Jefferson College. Congratulations to both players!
The Trail Blazers season came to a close on Tuesday, October 25, 2016 in Neosho, MO. Despite testing the opposing goalkeeper with seven shots on target, the Trail Blazers were unable to defeat Crowder College in the NJCAA Region XVI Semifinal, falling 3-0. This was the program's sixth semifinal appearance in Region XVI play, having advanced to and won the final in 2010 and 2014.
The program says goodbye to sophomores Nick Cooper, Andrew Lee, Patrick Foster, Zach Foss, Kyle Findley, Tarrek Alkhatib, Zion Hartzler, Shon Hatzler, Jesus Herrera, Lien Bugosen and Matt Hodges! Thank-you for all you have contributed to the MCC-Blue River program and family!
The Trail Blazers defeated defending NJCAA Region XVI Champion, and second seeded, Jefferson College on Saturday, October 22, 2016 by a score of 1-0 in the Region XVI Quarterfinal. They accomplished this victory despite playing the final 35 minutes with 10 players when a Blue River player was issued his second yellow card, resulting in a red card ejection. The Trail Blazers scored with 13 minutes left in the contest and resolutely defended during the final minutes to earn the win. The goal came off a set piece from sophomore Shon Hartzler. Freshman goal keeper Jonathan Sartin made several big saves to help earn the win and the shutout.
Luis Herrera has returned to health at the right time of the season. A standout player from Lincoln College Preparatory Academy, Herrera has been hampered most of the season with an injury to his knee. As he has returned to health, his offensive production has increased. Herrera followed up his first goal against East Central College with a strong performance against State Fair and a second goal against St. Louis Community College. Although the Trail Blazers lost to #9 ranked St. Louis, they were competitive throughout the game. Sophomore goal keeper Nick Cooper made several important one-on-one stops, ending the game with seven saves.
MCC-Blue River freshman Chris Burrow scored the game’s only goal against State Fair Community College on Tuesday, October 11, 2016. He was assisted by sophomore Kyle Findley. Burrow has scored five goals this season, while Findley has contributed two goals and three assists. The 1-0 win was the Trail Blazers first in region play after tough losses against Crowder College and East Central College the previous week. Next up for the Trail Blazers is nationally ranked St. Louis Community College on Saturday, September 15, 2016.
The MCC-Blue River men's team lost 3-2 in overtime against St. Charles Community College on September 24, 2016 and tied MCC-Maple Woods 0-0 in overtime on September 27, 2016. Goals in the St. Charles game were scored by Muamer Hamsic and Shon Hartzler. Hamsic is a freshman from North Kansas City High School. It was his first collegiate goal. Hartzler, a sophomore from Harrisonville High School, scored the Trail Blazers second goal from the penalty spot. The game was tied 2-2 before St. Charles scored the game winner in the second overtime period. Both results left the Trail Blazers with a NJCAA Region XVI record of 0-2-1 heading into their next region game at Crowder College on Tuesday, October 4, 2016 in Neosho, MO.
The Trail Blazers snapped a two game losing streak with an exciting overtime win against Wentworth Military College on September 21, 2016. Previous losses to Jefferson College and Northern Oklahoma College left the Trail Blazers in need of a win. The Trail Blazers had multiple opportunities in regulation play, but could not convert. In the first period of overtime, Grain Valley freshman Antonio Zamora played a pass behind the Wentworth defense to Belton freshman Chris Burrow, who calmly shot the ball over the opposing goal keeper for the win. Freshman goalkeeper Jonathan Sartin from William Chrisman High School registered five saves for the Trail Blazers.
The win improved the Trail Blazers record to 4-5 heading into the NJCAA Region XVI game against St. Charles Community College on Saturday, September 24, 2016 at 1 p.m. The game will be played at Bingham Middle School, 1716 South Speck Road, Independence, MO 64057. Admission is free!
In the first NJCAA Region XVI game of the season, the Trail Blazers lost 2-1 to Jefferson College on September 11, 2016. Tanner Tonioli of Jefferson scored the game’s first goal 33 minutes into the opening half. The Trail Blazers responded at the 65 minute mark when Blue Springs South sophomore Kyle Findley converted a penalty kick. The game was tied 1-1 going into the final 11 minutes of the second half. Both teams were evenly matched, but a counterattack goal off a Trail Blazers set piece resulted in the 2-1 loss. Sophomore Nick Cooper from Lee's Summit North High School made six saves for MCC-Blue River. The loss dropped the Trail Blazers record to 3-4 overall and 0-1 in Region XVI.
The MCC-Blue River men's soccer team bounced back from a tough 3-0 loss to Northeastern Oklahoma A&M by defeating Coffeyville Community College 3-0 on Wednesday, September 7, 2016. The win evened the Trail Blazers record at 3-3 going into NJCAA Region XVI play against Jefferson College. Goals were scored by freshmen Hakim Hemada and Antonio Zamora. The first goal from Hemada came off a cross from sophomore Shon Hartzler. Sophomore Zion Hartzler assisted the first of Zamora's two goals, slotting him through after making an excellent penetrating run with the ball. Antonio sealed the win with five minutes left in the contest, finishing a pass from freshman Matt Hutcheson.
A first half free kick from North Kansas City freshman Josh Jacobo started the scoring and spurred the Trail Blazers towards a 3-1 win over Wentworth Military College. The final two goals were scored by sophomore midfielders. Patrick Foster scored the game's second goal, which was assisted by Kyle Findley. Findley then converted from the penalty spot after being fouled with ten minutes left in the game. The win evened the Trail Blazers record at 2-2.
The MCC-Blue River men's team won a high scoring 5-4 game against Allen County Community College on Friday, August 26, 2016. Harrisonville sophomores Shon and Zion Hartzler combined for three goals, while freshman Chris Burrow and Nick Diaz also scored for the Trail Blazers. Freshman goal keeper Jonathan Sartin provided ten saves in goal.
The Trail Blazers were unable to keep the momentum the next day as they took on Neosho County Community College. Goals in the Neosho game came from freshman Chris Burrow and sophomore Matt Hodges. UMKC transfer Kyle Findley almost leveled the game in the final minutes, but his shot went slightly wide of the goal.