No. 21 men’s soccer wins 1-0 in overtime

Freshman Tom Caplan netted the game-winner in the fifth minute of overtime to push the No. 21 UCSD men’s soccer team to a crucial 1-0 victory over Chico State on Oct. 14 in Chico, Calif.

“We struggled a little bit since the field was hard and bumpy, which made it hard to control the ball,” head coach Derek Armstrong said.

Perhaps due to the adverse playing conditions, both teams played to a scoreless tie in the 90 minutes of regulation play.

Nonetheless, the Tritons managed to still outshoot Chico State by a 10-3 margin.

“We were threatening [Chico State] all of the second half,” Armstrong said.

The three shots allowed by the Tritons ties a season low by their opponents, tying the output of Cal State Bakersfield at Triton Soccer Stadium on Sept. 17.

UCSD’s leading scorer, senior Matt Davey, made the notable assist for the first goal, which was the second of Caplan’s career and the second in as many matches.

The golden goal came at the 94 minute, 57 second mark, when Caplan pounded a shot off a Chico State defender and into the net to lift the Tritons to a thrilling victory.

However, it was UCSD’s defense that keyed the victory.

“Defensively, it took a bit of adjusting, but we had a good command, despite the bad field,” Armstrong said.

UCSD senior goalkeeper Edward Ruhland picked up the shutout, his fourth and the team’s seventh of the season.

Ruhland was called on to make only one save in the match, as the Triton defense kept the Wildcats at bay.

Chico State, which also played well defensively, allowed just 12 shots, five of which were on goal. Sophomore Wildcat goalkeeper Brian Linné tallied five saves.

The overtime win brought the Tritons’ record to 9-3-1 overall and 6-3-1 in California Collegiate Athletic Association play. The loss pushed the Wildcats record to 3-9-2 overall and 3-5-1 in league action.

The victory was encouraging for the Tritons, who suffered a frustrating 2-1 defeat at the hands of Cal State Bakersfield on Oct. 12 when a Roadrunner nailed a penalty kick with one second left.

UCSD beat Cal State Stanislaus 1-0 on Oct. 16, but details were unavailable at press time.

The Tritons return to action to conclude their season-long three-match road trip at Cal State Stanislaus on Oct. 18.