Spartans Drop Exhibition To Bay Area Breeze

San Jose, Calif. - Two late-game shots by the Spartans were not enough to mount a comeback for San Jose State in its only preseason game of the year. The team was shutout, 6-0, by the Women's Professional Soccer League's Bay Area Breeze in an exhibition match.

   In the 67th minute, Cheryl Kute and Kacey Gricius each got shots off from point-blank range, but were denied.

   The Breeze was led by Victoria Frederick who opened the scoring in the ninth minute of the first half. The former University of Alabama standout ended the game with a hat trick and an assist, while Jennifer Ruiz-Williams and Gina Woodward had two points apiece.

   Spartan freshman goalkeeper Zoe Makrigiannis started the game in goal, making two saves on five shots. The Surrey, B.C., native was replaced at the 61:24 mark by junior Gladis Covarrubias, who turned away three of six shots in 28:36 minutes played.

   Despite being outscored, San Jose State took just three fewer shots than the Breeze (16-13). The Spartan offense was led by Kute, Gricius, and Mikaella Meibock, who each got off three shots.

   Spartans head coach Jeff Leightman was impressed with facets of his team's game: "In terms of moving the ball, I thought (in) the second half, we were much better than the first half so that was encouraging."

   He stated that junior Megan Molina, who was named to the preseason All-Western Athletic Conference second team played "as an outside back, fantastically."

   Leightman also commented positively on the play of newcomer Becca Spangler.

   "As a freshman, (she) came in at centerback and did very well. She hadn't shown us that in training so that was very encouraging."

   For their five remaining days of training camp, Leightman noted that the team has work left to be done in order to have a successful season.

    "We haven't played 11 vs. 11 since the second day of preseason and that showed in our organization and communication," said Leightman. "We've got a lot of things to work on still. With all of the injuries that we've had, it's been hard to find a rhythm."

   Despite the score, Leightman felt that the match was a positive experience.  "(This game was) a good way for us to see exactly where we are against a very good team, a professional team. They're going to punish you for your mistakes, and I think that they did that.

   "We'll watch some video and put some things back together for next week and be ready,"the Spartans head coach said.

   San Jose State opens its regular season on August 17 at home versus the University of San Francisco. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.