SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The Sacramento State men's soccer team (7-7-1, 3-3-1) took a 1-1 tie into overtime Wednesday afternoon against UC Santa Barbara (6-5-4, 4-1-2). Despite nearly 70 minutes of scoreless play in regulation, it took UCSB just four minutes to score the golden goal in the first overtime period and steal the game 2-1 from the Hornets in Sacramento.
The expectation was that today's match between the second-place Gauchos and third-place Hornets would be tightly contested and that expectation was certainly met. Defensively, both teams were fantastic. In total, the two teams combined for just 13 shots (eight by UCSB, five by Sacramento State) and only three shots on goal.
UCSB was on the board first, taking advantage of a Sacramento State handball in the box in the 20th minute. Rodney Michael, the Gauchos' leading scorer, took the penalty kick and drilled it in from just 12 yards out. The lead didn't last long, though, as Sacramento State's Dominic Scotti scored his second goal of the year six minutes later.
From there, the two teams shut things down and the score remained 1-1 at the end of regulation. It was Michael again for UCSB, who took a through ball up the left side of the box and sent it across and into the back right corner for the game-winner in the 94th minute.
Sacramento State went to overtime for the fifth time this year and third in conference. The team has fared all right in extra time, posting a 2-1-2 record overall and a 1-1-1 overtime record in conference.
The more telling fact on the Hornets season is their record at home where they are just 2-5-1 this season. They are averaging fewer goals and allowing more this season on their home pitch. Away from Hornet Field, Sacramento State is an impressive 4-2 on the road and 1-0 in neutral matches.
With the loss, Sacramento State remains at 10 points and in third place in the North Division. UC Davis, who also lost this afternoon, drops to second place with 13 points. With the win, UCSB climbs into first place with 14 points.
While the division is certainly still up in the air, the Hornets will now need some help from other teams if they hope to open the tournament at home or with a bye. With a win over Cal Poly on Saturday, Sacramento State will clinch a spot in the tournament.
That match on Saturday is set for 3:00 pm. It will also be senior day for Sacramento State, as the team celebrates the final home game of their graduating seniors.