Tuesday night, on the turf of rival Cal Poly, the UC Davis men’s soccer team’s winning streak of four was broken.
The Aggies fell to the Mustangs 1-0 in their first match on a four-game road trip, resulting in an overall record of 6-5-4 and 4-2 in Big West Championships play. The Mustangs improved to 8-5-1 overall and 3-2 in the Big West.
Cal Poly junior midfielder Nolan Moore scored a quick goal in the 26th minute to put the team up 1-0 early on in the game. In addition, freshman goalkeeper Wade Hamilton came up with four saves to keep the Aggies from leveling the playing field for the rest of the night.
In the sixth minute of match play, Mustang junior midfielder George Malki fired a shot at junior goalkeeper Omar Zeenni, only to have it blocked promptly and put back into play.
Twenty minutes later, however, Malki struck yet another shot at Zeenni. Zeenni managed to stop the ball, but was unable to hold onto it. As a result, Moore pounced on the opportunity and was able to score the winning shot for Cal Poly.
The Aggies appeared to struggle offensively, as they were unable to strike a shot for the first 30 minutes. However, their offense quickly picked up, as they forced three first-half saves from Hamilton.
Sophomore forward Matt Wiesenfarth attempted a goal shortly after but was turned away by Hamilton. During the final minute of the first half, junior Alex Henry acquired a rebound from senior forward John Joslin, hoping to make a run with it, but was cut short by Hamilton.
The team’s offensive woes continued into the second half. The Aggies attempted 11 shots, including a 58th-minute effort from Joslin that hit the cross-bar.
Unfortunately, in the final few moments, junior forward Alex Aguiar’s effort was blocked and senior Mustafa Chopan’s attempt was wide left, ultimately leaving UC Davis scoreless.
Overall, the Aggies accumulated 10 corner kick opportunities in comparison to Cal Poly’s two. Additionally, UC Davis took 15 total shots, while Cal Poly took only nine. The match was extremely aggressive, as the Aggies committed 13 fouls and the Mustangs committed nine.
Next, the Aggies will look to continue their road trip to Sacramento State, where they will look to overtake the Hornets and capture the first spot in the Big West Championships. Currently, the Hornets sit in first place with 13 points, while the Aggies sit in second place just one behind, with 12.
The Sacramento State men’s soccer team is coming off its first Big West loss against No.16 UC Santa Barbara. The Hornets lost 0-2 on the home turf of the Gauchos.
Sacramento State and UC Davis have not encountered each other this season, but both will be looking to bounce back from their respective losses. This Saturday at 4 p.m. at Hornet Field the Aggies will look to pull out a victory that would put them at the top of the Big West Championships leaderboard.