Cal Poly shut out by men's soccer

    The UCSD men’s soccer team hoped to reach the California Collegiate Athletic Association Championship Tournament, but before its game against Cal Poly Pomona on Oct. 24, the Tritons knew they had dropped out of contention for the tournament wild card berth.

    Nevertheless, the Triton defense came up with its third straight shutout in the team’s 2-0 victory over Cal Poly Pomona at Triton Soccer Stadium.

    The Broncos had control during the first 10 minutes, keeping the ball in front of the Triton goal. UCSD sophomore goalkeeper Jeremy Cookson was faced with several Bronco shots early in the game.

    The Tritons earned their own share of scoring opportunities when, with less than 2 minutes left in the half, freshman midfielder Nick Marquand scored UCSD’s first goal in two games. Marquand took a pass from teammate Ryan Tondee and found himself one-on-one with Bronco goalkeeper Garret Williams. The Tritons took the 1-0 lead when Marquand’s shot sailed over Williams’ head and into the net.

    UCSD cushioned its lead in the second half when Triton freshman defensive back Luke Russell found junior Kris Chiles in front of the Bronco goal. At the 70:29 mark, Chiles’ shot went past Williams and gave the Tritons a 2-0 lead.

    Following the score, junior Ryan Weirich took over in the Triton goal for Cookson. Cookson stopped two Bronco shots and Weirich made three saves in the final 20 minutes of the game. Williams saved two shots for Cal Poly Pomona.

    It was a physical game. Although the referee called several fouls, the two teams continued to play rough throughout the game, especially during the last 20 minutes. With less than 10 minutes remaining, Bronco midfielder Danny Nishiyama committed a hard slide-tackle on Triton midfielder Ryan Blair, who had to come out of the game after being down on the field for several minutes.

    The Broncos, who are in last place in the CCAA South Division, saw their record fall to 2-10-0 in the CCAA and 2-13-1 overall. The Tritons’ victory improved their record to 6-6-1 in the CCAA and 6-8-0 overall.

    Of its last seven games, UCSD had only lost one of them, but it was the team’s sluggish start this season that hurt its chances of playing in the championships. Perhaps the absence of All-American forward Bobby Saadati, who was sidelined all season, was the cause of the 1-7 start.

    Whatever the reason, the Tritons will have to watch the tournament from the sidelines this year. UC Davis, which beat UCSD at home Sept. 28, will be the wild card team at the tournament, which will be hosted by UCSD at Triton Soccer Stadium. The tournament is scheduled to start Nov. 1.

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