DAVIS, Calif. – The San José State University men’s soccer team opened its regular season with a 0-0 tie against UC Davis on Friday night.
“I am very happy to get the result especially with Rory (Knibbs), Kyle (O’Mahoney), (Jonathan) Colunga missing large parts of preseason and also (Jeremy) Romero and (Jonathan) Partida,” said Spartans head coach Simon Tobin.
After giving up four goals last Sunday in its only preseason game, the Spartans defense tightened up to help goalkeeper Nedin Tucakovic earn a clean sheet in his Spartan debut.
“Defense is earned and all 11 of them earned it today,” said Tobin. “The back four worked very well together and we showed a lot that we can battle against a physically strong UC Davis team.”
Much of the first half was played on the Spartans side of the field with the Aggies outshooting the Spartans, 8-2, including a shot off the post in the third minute of play.
The Spartans’ best chance in the half came when freshman Ronaldo Lomeli was grabbed just outside the 18 to draw a yellow card for the Aggies. Colunga took the subsequent free kick from 20 yards out, but it sailed high.
The flow of the game remained similar in the second half with the Spartans fighting off the Aggies’ scoring opportunities with few offensive opportunities, until senior captain Rory Knibbs was inserted to game in the 83rd minute.
“The offense opened up after Rory came into the game as he’s got a presence,” said Tobin. “All of a sudden, you become wary as they needed to be aware of him.”
With Knibbs on the pitch, the Spartans had their only shot on goal of the game, by Jonathan Partida. The Spartans outshot the Aggies, 5-3, in the two overtimes with Knibbs’ presence opening up play for Alex Alcaraz and Colunga on the left side.
“The way Alcaraz and Colunga were clicking at the end, it was beautiful to watch,” said Tobin.
The Spartans are back in action Sunday, August 28 at 3:00 p.m. (PT) vs. the University of the Pacific in the home opener on the SJSU Football Practice Field. Admission is free.
- Tucakovic, Leonardo Silva, Suliman Khorami, Jeremy Romero made their Spartan debuts as starters with Joey Bastian, Ralph Stas and Ronaldo Lomeli coming off the bench for their debut.
- Tucakovic, Kyle O’Mahoney, Colunga, Uriel Ayala, Scott Buskey and Jonathan Partida all played the full 110 minutes.
- Jonathan Partida wore his old jersey number 18 for the game. He will wear #20 this season.
Soccer Game Summary (Final)
2016 San Jose State Women's Soccer
San Jose State vs UC Davis (Aug 26, 2016 at Davis, Calif.)
San Jose State (0-0-1) vs. UC Davis (0-0-1)
Date: Aug 26, 2016 Attendance: 535
Goals by period 1 2 OT O2 Tot
San Jose State...... 0 0 0 0 - 0
UC Davis.............. 0 0 0 0 - 0
Shots: San Jose State 10, UC Davis 16
Saves: San Jose State 4 (Tucakovic, Nedin 4), UC Davis 1 (Quezada, Armando 1)