San Jose, Calif. - San Jose State University had the better of the chances, and out-shot visiting Santa Clara University, 22-10, but could not cash in over the course of 110 minutes as the two South Bay rivals battled to a scoreless tie at Spartan Stadium on Sunday night, September 27.
With its first draw of the 2009 season, the Spartans move to 2-6-1 on the year. Santa Clara is now 2-4-2 following a second straight tie this weekend. The Broncos, members of the West Coast Conference had played to a 1-1 deadlock at home with No. 25 Brown on Friday night.
The match marked a second straight double-overtime affair for San Jose State as well, after its tough 2-1 loss at another area rival, University of San Francisco, also on Friday night. The Spartans have now gone undefeated in seven straight regular-season matches in San Jose, dating back to 2008. They had won their last six home contests by a combined score of 17-3.
San Jose State clearly had the two best scoring opportunities of the night, both coming off the foot of senior left midfielder and team co-captain Nick Cukar.
The latter one saw junior holding central midfielder Josh Boemecke lift a through ball over the top that Cukar ran onto, took a touch, and shot hard with his right foot from the right side of the Bronco penalty area, only for it to get past sprawling SCU goalkeeper Larry Jackson to his right and smack off the left post. That opportunity came in the 95th minute, midway through the first 10-minute sudden-victory overtime period, and would have ended the match.
In the 12th minute, senior forward Colby Moore gave a great pass inside from the left to set up Cukar one-on-one with Jackson, but Cukar's shot was saved by the freshman out of East Palo Alto.
Just two minutes after that, Cukar cracked a left-footed shot from the left diagonal that was saved. Another decent Spartan chance in the first half came in the 39th minute, as redshirt sophomore central midfielder Justin Castro half-volleyed from the center of the penalty area, a shot which required a tipped save from the Bronco net-minder, out to a Spartan corner kick.
In the 59th minute, fifth-year senior Spartan midfielder Brian McGuire's left-footed shot was tailing away from Jackson, who was narrowly still able again to parry the attempt that was headed toward the upper right corner, to safety.
With less than a minute remaining in regulation, Moore latched onto a through ball on the ground by junior teammate Ricky Dorrego near the right flank, but put his first-time attempt wide to the right of goal. In the second extra session, Castro and Dorrego combined to put striker Dylan Murphy into the offensive third, but the freshman's hard shot was caught by Jackson.
Cukar had a game-high seven shots in the match to equal his single-game career high, with two of them on goal. Castro, a San Jose native, added three, with two on target. Moore, at 6-foot-1, and junior Bronco center back Jalil Anibaba, at 6-foot, battled each other all night.
Jonathan Lester needed to make just two stops to earn his second collegiate shutout in the Spartan goal, while Jackson finished with six saves for his second shutout this season.
Kellen Wantulok and Murphy Campbell led the Broncos with three shots apiece. Wantulok's free kick from around 28 yards with just over two minutes left in the second overtime, was hit low and made it through the Spartan wall, ultimately going wide left.
San Jose State heads back on the road in the week ahead, travelling to Houston, Texas, on Thursday, October 1, to take part in the Houston Baptist University Tournament.
Santa Clara (2-4-2) - 0 0 0 0 - 0
San Jose State (2-6-1) - 0 0 0 0 - 0
SCU - 10
SJSU - 22
SCU - 6 (Larry Jackson-6)
SJSU - 2 (Jonathan Lester-2)
SCU - 5
SJSU - 7
SCU - 13
SJSU - 18