Men's soccer wins its final home game

The UCSD men’s soccer team battled hard and was victorious by a final of 3-2 in a must-win game against Cal State San Bernardino on Oct. 26. With the win, the Tritons are currently ranked second in the South Division of the California Collegiate Athletic Association.

Guardian file photo

The seniors on the team said goodbye as they played their final game at UCSD. Emotions were clearly running high in this pivotal game, as evidenced by the intense physical play of both teams and the spirited support of the crowd.

“”We won tonight because we all decided to play hard, and we had the same desire to win,”” said Triton midfielder Matthew Davey, who tallied a goal in the first half.

The contributions of freshmen Davey and Jon Krupanksy are an indication that the Tritons will continue to carry a strong, winning spirit that the outgoing seniors brought to the team.

The game started off quickly with Triton senior co-captain Kris Chiles scoring a goal off the left post only 59 seconds into the contest. The Coyotes tied it up with a goal from forward Jason Koza, but the Tritons took the lead again when Davey scored off of a free kick.

The physical play intensified in the second half when the Tritons fought to keep the Coyotes from pulling off a comeback.

Krupansky scored the decisive goal for the Tritons in the 70th minute off a rebound by CSUSB goalie Joseph Kulm to increase the lead to 3-1. The Coyotes added another goal 10 minutes later, but the unyielding and aggressive Triton defense was able to hold CSUSB off and secure a much-needed win to keep UCSD’s playoff hopes alive.

This victory is especially sweet for the five seniors bidding farewell to UCSD: Chiles, co-captain Bobby Saadati, Burke Fathy, Tyler Girimonte and Derek Orchard.

“”I am so happy we won tonight; [winning] was my only goal. I did not feel any pressure at all. We just need to keep this same intensity in the next two games to make the playoffs,”” said Chiles, who had an assist to go with his goal in the game.

With a record of 9-5 overall and a 7-5 CCAA record, the second-place Tritons must now look ahead to their last two games of the season against Cal Poly Pomona on Oct. 29 and Grand Canyon University on Nov. 2. Cal Poly Pomona currently holds the top spot in the South Division, and UCSD must win its last two in order to ensure a berth into the CCAA postseason.

“”I am pleased with the results. This sets up the big game for us on [Oct. 29 against Cal Poly Pomona],”” UCSD head coach Derek Armstrong said. “”It is a must-win situation. It is up to the boys.””