SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The Sacramento State men's soccer team (5-4, 1-0) opened conference play tonight at Hornet Field with a big 1-0 win over the defending conference champion CSUN Matadors.
The Hornets and Matadors went toe-to-toe in what was a physical match up, taking a scoreless tie into the half. The first half featured just four shots (Sacramento, 3-1) compared to 17 fouls (CSUN, 9-8). Overall, the two teams combined for five yellow cards and 36 total fouls.
Sacramento Sate finally broke through in the second period as Matt Carnefix scored his first goal of the year. The play started as Justin Bedig lofted a free kick into the box. After deflecting off a Matador defender, Carnefix took control of the ball and hooked a right-foot volley into the far side of the net in the 52nd minute. The goal turned out to be the game winner, as the Hornets and Del Curto shut out Northridge over the remaining 38 minutes of play.
FINAL: North wins again - @SacStMSoccer 1-0 over CSUN.— Big West M-Soccer (@BigWestMSOC) September 29, 2017
⚽️ Matt Carnefix (52' via Justin Bedig).
James Del Curto (5 SV) the 5th Hornet with 200+ saves!#StingersUp Sat. vs UCI. #StartBig pic.twitter.com/HBp7iyJQIp
Carnefix became the eighth Hornet to score this season. As a team, they have 11 goals from eight different players in nine games. With the assist, Bedig now has three on the season to go with two goals. His seven points are tied with Trevor Jackson (three goals, one assist) for the most on the squad.
The Hornets improved to 5-4 overall and 1-0 in conference play. The shutout victory is their second this season (both credited to goalkeeper James Del Curto) and the team has allowed just six goals in their last five games. For the season, Curto improved to 5-4 with 25 saves.
In addition, Del Curto became just the fifth men's soccer goalkeeper to eclipse 200 saves. He entered tonight's match at 199 and, after five saves in the shutout win, has 204, the fifth most in program history. Number four on the list is Gary Davis (1992-95) with 222. Del Curto's current coach, Matt McDougall, is the all-time program record holder with 306 career saves.
Sacramento state is now 4-1 over their last five games. They'll look to continue their hot play as they host UC Irvine (5-4-1, 0-1) on Saturday, Sept. 30 at 4:00 pm at Hornet Field.