Men's soccer nab share of MPSF regular season crown

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Tony Chang's goal in the 98th minute not only helped to lead the San Jose State University men's soccer team a 2-1 sudden-death overtime victory over Sacramento State, but made the Spartans regular season co-champions of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. Coupled with New Mexico's loss and Sunday afternoon's win in Sacramento, the Spartans and the Lobos each have 15 points and a 5-1-0 record in conference play.

The Hornets fell to 5-9-4 overall and 2-3-1 in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation while the Spartans raised their record to 12-7, 5-1. The match was the final game of the 2002 regular season for both schools.

San Jose State got on the board first in the 30th minute when Johnny Gonzales found the net off an assist by Fausto Villegas. Villegas received the ball in front of the Hornet goal and touched a pass to Gonzales for the score.

Sacramento State evened the score in the 81st minute when junior forward David Fraser sent a shot over the reach of Spartan goalkeeper Mike Lawrence. The Hornets were awarded a free kick just outside the Spartans' goalkeeper box and Fraser sent a shot into a wall of San Jose State defenders. Fraser collected the rebound off the deflection and blasted a shot from 20 yards that deflected off of the fingertips of Lawrence for the goal.

Neither team could capitalize before the end of regulation and the contest was sent into overtime. With less than three minutes remaining in the period, Chang connected on the game-winning goal off an assist by Eric Rodriguez. Rodriguez set up the play when he dribbled down the left sideline and struck a crossing pass towards the middle. Chang attacked from the far post and placed the shot in the right side of the goal.

In a battle of freshman netminders, the Hornets' Matt McDougall recorded five saves while Lawrence earned the win with four saves.


The Spartans clinched the No. 2 seed in MPSF Tournament after losing to New Mexico last Sunday. Sacramento State clinched the fourth seed in the and will host fifth-seeded Denver UNLV finished as the third seed and will host sixth-seeded Air Force on Thursday, Nov. 14, at 5:30 p.m. PST. New Mexico and San Jose State will have a bye in the first round of the tournament as the top seeds. The winner of the MPSF Tournament earns an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament on Sunday, Nov. 25.

FINAL MPSF STANDINGS

1 New Mexico 5-1 (15)
2 San Jose State 5-1 (15)
3 UNLV 4-2 (12)
4 Sacramento State 2-3-1 (7)
5 Denver 2-4 (6)
6 Air Force 2-4 (6)