San Jose, Calif. - The San Jose State men's soccer team scored five goals in the second half against the Grand Canyon University Antelopes en route to a 6-0 victory in a Western Athletic Conference (WAC) match on Sunday afternoon on Spartan Soccer Field.
It is the program's largest margin of victory in a shutout against a Division I opponent since a 6-0 decision against Loyola Marymount on October 23, 1994 and the most goals scored in a match since a 6-1 win over Sacramento State on September 26, 2003.
The teams played a statistically even a the end of the day, but San José State (4-7-0, 2-1-0 WAC) was able to take advantage of its opportunities in the largest margin of victory in a conference match in its history.
Rory Knibbs got the first of his two goals on the day just 10 minutes into the match. Jonathan Partida passed the ball down the right side to Knibbs. The junior from London, England then dribbled into the box and chipped a shot over the charging Antelopes keeper to give the Spartans a 1-0 lead. It would turn out to be the game-winner: Knibbs' fourth of the year.
Grand Canyon (6-5-0, 2-2-0) had a slight 7-to-6 advantage in shots in the first period, but the Spartans controlled the run of play and put two shot attempts on frame to the Antelopes one.
Starting the second half with a 1-0 advantage, SJSU wasted no time in putting the ball in the back of the net. At the 48:03 mark Jonathan Colunga opened his account for 2015 scoring off an indirect freekick. An Antelopes defender passed the ball back to his keeper who was inside his six. Kendyl Day, the keeper, picked the pass up, which is a foul. The ball was awarded to the Spartans at the top of the six. Knibbs played it back a couple of yards to Colunga who hammered it through the GCU wall to make it 2-0.
Nearly nine minutes later Knibbs picked up his second goal. Partida stole the ball at midfield, fed Colunga who found Knibbs at the top of the 18. Driving to his right, the striker shot high to the right corner of the frame for a 3-0 lead.
Six minutes after Knibbs' second goal, at the 63:19 mark, Partida, a freshman from Newark, got his first goal of the season. Alex Alcaraz played a pass into the box which Partida placed in the same spot Knibbs had just minutes earlier for a 4-0 advantage.
Partida's tally ultimately spelled the end of the day for Day, who would be tagged with the loss. Luca Licciardi came on in the 72nd minute for the Antelopes, but he would suffer just as much as his predecessor.
At the 73:27 mark, freshman Zach Penner doubled his goal total on the year with a tremendous individual effort. He chased a long, high ball in the offensive zone, fought and beat a defender to it, and then made a couple of moves to create space for himself. He fired a shot across the goal and scored inside the far post for his second goal of the year and a 5-0 lead.
In the second half, both team's attempted eight shots. The Spartans put five in the net; the Antelopes zero.
In the victory, Spartans keeper Emmanuel Espinoza earned his first clean sheet of the season. He had five saves and in the final 10 minutes weathered an all out assault by the Antelopes to maintain the shutout.
Colunga led the side with four shots, putting three on frame, picking up a goal and an assist. Partida, Penner and Knibbs each took two shots. Partida had a goal and two assists. Knibbs has two goals and an assist and Penner a goal. McLaughlin scored on his single shot. The team leader in assists, Alcaraz picked up his fourth of the season. Parra also had an assist, his first of the year. Mikhal Wingate-Pearse and Eddie Saydee, both defenders, took a shot each.
For Grand Canyon, Nikki Jackson and Alberto Sanchez Garcia produced four shots apiece.
The Spartans continue league play next Friday and Sunday at No. 23 Utah Valley and No. 19 Seattle University, respectively.
Soccer Game Summary (Final)
2015 San Jose State Men's Soccer
Grand Canyon vs San Jose State (Oct 11, 2015 at San Jose, Calif.)
Grand Canyon (6-5-0, 2-2-0 WAC) vs. San Jose State (4-7-0, 1-1-0 WAC)
Date: Oct 11, 2015 Attendance: 138
Goals by period 1 2 Tot
Grand Canyon........ 0 0 - 0
San Jose State...... 1 5 - 6
- 10:27 SJSU Knibbs, Rory (7) (Partida, Jonathan) - served into the box knibbs chips over oncoming keeper
- 48:03 SJSU Colunga, Jonathan (1) (Knibbs, Rory) - off an indirect free kick at top of 6
- 56:54 SJSU Knibbs, Rory (8) (Partida, Jonathan;Colunga, Jonathan) - stolen at midfield knibbs shost to neat post
- 63:19 SJSU Partida, Jonathan (1) (Alcaraz, Alex) - centered w/ Partida shoting high to far post
- 73:27 SJSU Penner, Zach (unassisted)
- 78:02 SJSU McLaughlin, Kyler (2) (Parra, Victor) - off a corner headed inside near post
Shots: Grand Canyon 15, San Jose State 14
Saves: Grand Canyon 3 (Day, Kendyl 3), San Jose State 5 (Espinoza,Emmanuel 5)