FULLERTON, Calif. - San Jose State University advanced to the championship game of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation playoffs with a 1-0 victory over UC Irvine today at Titan Stadium.
The Spartans scored the only goal of the game at the 28:12 mark of the first half. Ryan Suarez passed the ball from near the midfield stripe to Isaias Bardales. Bardales then lofted a shot from 18 yards out that went over the outstretched hand of UC Irvine goalkeeper Tyler Reid and into the net.
"That was a great ball," SJSU head coach Gary St. Clair said. "A great pass from Ryan and a well-executed shot. That was a professional-type goal." The goal was the 10th of the season for Bardales. Suarez recorded his second save of the season on the play.
San Jose State had 10 shots in the first half. But in the second half the Spartans were limited to two shots. UC Irvine was issued four yellow cards in the second half.
"It's just playoff soccer. Playoff soccer is tough," commented St. Clair. "The game got away from us in the second half. But, that being said, we walked off the field with a win and that's all that matters."
The Spartans are now 19-0-1 overall, tying the school record for victories in a season set in 1978.The shutout was the 18th of SJSU goalkeeper Chris Humphreys career, tying a record set by St. Clair from 1970-73.
"I'm real happy for him. He's had a wonderful year. This is a well-deserved record," St. Clair said. "I may just have to make a comeback now."
In Sunday's championship game, San Jose State will meet Cal State Fullerton, a 3-1 winner over Denver in the other semifinal game. Sunday's game is scheduled to begin at 1:00 p.m. The winner receives an automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament.
UC Irvine 0 0 -- 0 San Jose State 1 0 -- 1
SJSU - Isaias Bardales (Ryan Suarez), 28:12 Shots - SJSU 12, UCI 12 Saves - SJSU 6 (Chris Humphreys 6), UCI 6 (Tyler Reid 6) Corner kicks - SJSU 9, UCI 5 Fouls - UCI 14, SJSU 10 Offsides - SJSU 3, UCI 1 Records - SJSU 19-0-1, UCI 12-8-1