San Jose, Calif.----A goal in extra time ended the Spartans' dominance, in a 2-1 loss against the UNLV Rebels on Friday night, October 29. San Jose State outshot UNLV 20-14 in a match controlled by Spartan possession.
San Jose State falls to 7-8-2 and 1-5-2 in MPSF play and remains in fourth place with five points in the MPSF Pacific Division, with two conference matches remaining. The two teams the Spartans must hurdle for a spot in the MPSF Tournament, Sacramento State (8 points) and Seattle University (7 points), went winless Friday night and remain within striking distance for San Jose State.
The game-winning goal came in the first overtime at the 94:58 mark when a Rebel free kick found sophomore Nick Marshall in the box, knocking it past goalkeeper Rene Martinez for the 2-1 win.
"We worked very, very hard tonight," stated head coach Gary St. Clair. "We had many chances to win and finish the match. When you can't finish, you leave it open for the other team to take it."
Despite controlling possession for most of the evening, San Jose State was never able to capitalize on its chances. The Spartans penetrated deep into Rebel territory on several occasions, however the Rebel defense was able to thwart all but one of their scoring opportunities.
In the 39:20 mark in the first half, senior Josh Boemecke intercepted a pass from a Rebel defender and shot the ball past goalkeeper Simon Cook in the top right corner for the equalizer, notching his WAC-leading ninth goal of the season. Before that, senior Stephen Sifuentes tallied his first goal of the season and of the game, knocking one into the top right corner from sophomore Jonny Espinoza's pass.
Junior Roberto Casteneda, who made a number of nice runs to create scoring chances, led the Spartans with three shots on goal. Goalkeeper Rene Martinez started his first match since September 24 at Santa Clara. Martinez finished the night with five saves.
Next up for the Spartans is a showdown with New Mexico (7-4-4, 4-2-2 MPSF) on October 31 at Spartan Stadium beginning at 12:00 p.m. That match is a double-header with San Jose State's women's soccer team, who square off with Boise State at 2:30 p.m.
Score by periods
San Jose State (7-8-2, 1-5-2 MPSF) 1 0 0 1
UNLV (6-9-1, 3-4-1 MPSF) 1 0 1 2
UNLV: Stephen Sifuentes (Jonny Espinoza), 27:59
San Jose State: Josh Boemecke, 39:20
UNLV: Nick Marshall, 94:58
San Jose State: 20
Rene Martinez (SJSU): 5
Simon Cook (UNLV): 6
San Jose State: 10
San Jose State: 15