San Jose, Calif. – Two goals by the Cal Poly Mustangs in the first three minutes of the match proved to be the difference as the San Jose State men’s soccer team lost 3-1 on Sunday afternoon in Spartan Stadium.
“You can’t work on a game plan all week and then give up two quick goals at the start of a game,” head coach Gary St. Clair said. “It forces you to throw out your plan and wastes all the work you’ve put in.”
Just 1:48 in to the contest, Cal Poly’s Mackenzie Pridham picked up a loose ball in the box. He made two quick moves on Spartan defenders, found himself alone at the top of the six and tucked the ball inside the post for a 1-0 lead.
Less than a minute later, the Mustangs (1-2-0) got a goal-scoring header from Chris Gashen off a cross from Chris Bernardi. With just 2:45 played Cal Poly had a 2-0 lead.
The Spartans (0-2-0) got on the board in the 19th minute when Kyler McLaughlin centered a ball to the far post. Dylan Murphy headed it back toward McLaughlin’s side and found the back of the net on the far side of the box.
For the half, the Spartans out shot Cal Poly 5-to-4, but went to the locker rooms down 2-1.
The start of the second half looked similar to the start of the first.
Cal Poly got a goal 1:44 into the second half from Ian Clark, who took a long throughball and beat Spartans’ keeper Michael Schwinn to the near post.
San Jose State again outshot the Mustangs 5-to-2 for the half, but the better scoring opportunities belonged to Cal Poly.
“We had some good chances throughout the game, but just couldn’t catch a break in the second half,” St. Clair said. “Right now we are lacking experience and that is showing on both ends of the field.”
Steven Sanchez led the Spartans offense with three shots. Murphy had two, both on goal. McLaughlin picked up his first collegiate point on the Murphy goal.
Cal Poly took just six shots on the day and was led by Gashen’s two.
Chase Hauser got the win (1-0-0) in his first start. Schwinn was tagged with the loss (0-2-0).
San Jose State returns to action next Sunday at Santa Clara. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.