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The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Patel, Dias lead women’s soccer team to victory

When you think of the great duos in sports, most of them come from basketball or football. But the Chico State women’s soccer team has found its own dynamic duo: junior midfielder Lindsey Dias and sophomore forward Pooja Patel.

The chemistry they have built together shows in the success of the women’s soccer team this season. Patel leads the team with five goals and six assists with Dias right behind her at four goals and four assists, leading the Wildcats to a record of 7-3-2.

While on-the-field success is blossoming, their off-the-field relationship continues to grow and has helped them trust each other more on the field.

“We are actually next door neighbors,” said the two in unison, smiling from ear to ear. “Whenever we get bored or want to hang out and do something, we just hop over to the other’s place,” Patel said.

Whether it’s doing homework, watching movies or just sitting around a table talking about life and soccer, their bond keeps growing as the goals pile up.

The friendship these two have is built on trust; they trust each other on the field and they trust each other off the field. That trust has become a sort of sixth sense on the field— they know what the other is going to do in certain situations.

“Our connection on the field has definitely gotten better this year because we trust each other more,” Dias said. “It’s a lot easier to play with girls that you have a connection with because you can read what they are going to do and it’s just more fun that way.”

The dynamic duo was on full display in the game against Cal State Stanislaus on Oct. 4 when Patel assisted on both goals to Dias, including the clincher in overtime.

“Two assists for her and two goals for me was pretty cool because it was the exact same play both times, so we knew it was coming,” Dias said.

The game was also played on Chico’s home field, so it made the win that much more meaningful against their rivals.

“The fact that it was overtime and it was against Stanislaus on our home field gave it a lot of hype,” Patel said. “It was a lot of fun getting that overtime win.”

Playing a sport in college is not an easy task. It takes a lot of hard work and commitment to balance school and a sport. Luckily for Patel and Dias, they have each other to lean on.

“Soccer is pretty much our life. We are doing that 24/7,” Dias said.

Jason Spies can be reached at [email protected] or @Jason_Spies on Twitter.

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