SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Sacramento State men's soccer team went head-to-head with UC Riverside in a physical match Saturday. Though the first half passed without a goal, it was two second-half goals for the Highlanders that proved the difference as the Hornets fell, 2-0, Saturday afternoon.
With the loss, Sacramento State falls to 2-4 in Big West play and 4-10-2 overall. The win bumps UC Riverside to 4-2 in league play and 6-9-1 for the season.
The first half was a physical and tightly-contested 45 minutes of Big West soccer. The Hornets took eight shots in the first half, just one shy of UC Riverside's nine, though neither were able to find the back of the net and the half ended nil-nil.
UC Riverside came out the more aggressive squad in the second half, however, putting extra pressure on the Hornet back line. They broke the scoreless tie in the 51st on a goal by Roberto Garcia.
The dagger came 18 minutes later when the Highlanders got a through ball past the Hornets defenders, forcing goalkeeper Ryan Curtis in a one-on-one situation that he was unable to save.
In the second half, Sacramento State was outshot 8-2, though they held a significant advantage in corner kicks, 4-0. Overall, the teams were even in corners with five apiece.
Oscar Govea and Brad Bumgarner tied for the team lead with three shots apiece, though neither were able to place one on goal. Omar Oseguera and Benji Kikanovic were responsible for the team's two shots on goal with one each. Josh Dull and Dane Schnell each added a shot, as well.
The fouls also piled up in Saturday's match, especially on UC Riverside's end. The Highlanders were called for 17 fouls to the Hornets nine. Sacramento State was shown three yellow cards, however, while the Highlanders received two.
Sacramento State and UC Riverside's match was the conference's early game on Saturday. With multiple matches scheduled for Saturday night and another on Sunday, much is left to be determined in terms of overall conference standings.
Regardless of this weekend's outcomes around the league, the Hornets will need a win in their final match of the year next Saturday.
Sacramento State hosts causeway rival UC Davis in their final regular season match of the year on Saturday, Oct. 27. Kickoff is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday's match is also Senior Day for the Hornets as they recognize their four graduating seniors.
More information can always be found by visiting the Men's Soccer homepage online at HornetSports.com.