COLUMBIA — It wasn't Edgar Reyna's first career hat trick, but it's his first one with the Columbia College men's soccer team.
"I scored hat tricks on my juco team, but it's not as competitive as here," he said.
Cougars coach John Klein said he doesn't remember the last time a Cougars player notched a hat trick.
For the past three games, Klein played Reyna, a Pima Community College transfer, at forward and Reyna delivered. He scored the game-winning, double overtime goal Sept. 22 against Lindenwood, and then provided the only score Saturday against Friends (Kan.) University. The American Midwest Conference awarded Reyna Offensive Player of the Week honors for the performance.
Wednesday night he didn't slow down, adding a hat trick in a 5-1 victory against Harris-Stowe in the Cougars' conference opener.
Reyna admitted despite his hat trick, he did not have a perfect game. For his first goal, the right-footed Reyna conceded he actually mishit the ball with his left foot.
"I was trying to actually hit it into the middle to John (Hutchison)," he said.
His left foot did not bother him on his second goal when he cracked the ball from far out. Reyna deflected in a Jimmy Herrman cross for his third goal.
As a person, Reyna is quiet and soft-spoken. As a soccer player, Reyna stands out.
"Edgar made a statement tonight," Columbia College coach John Klein said. "Edgar's made a statement in the past three games."
Senior teammate Alex Rangel said Reyna is a shy guy, but once he gets to know you, he is talkative.
Also a Pima Community College product, Rangel helped recruit Reyna to the Cougars.
"He was the one who recommended Edgar in the first place," Klein said.
Rangel and Edgar played together for Pima and have a long-lasting, childhood friendship. The current roommates first started playing together club soccer for Tucson Soccer Academy in Arizona.
"I gave him details on how the school is, how the team is," Rangel said. "He heard we went to nationals, so he knew this was a good program. I like the school, and I told him about the school. I think he really enjoys it here."
Reyna admitted that Columbia College was not his first choice because he was recruited by NCAA Division II schools. But he said the fact the team went to nationals was the decisive factor in his decision to become a Cougar.
Klein said he did not know where he wanted to play Reyna when he transferred.
"I think every team is looking for a goal scorer," he said. "He's scored five goals in the last three games. I think we're going to leave him there for a while."