Men's Soccer Battles Heredia, Jetlag In Opening Match Of Costa Rica Tour

Aug. 17, 2002

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica - -

After 12 hours of travel, the Oregon State men's soccer squad arrived in San Jose, Costa Rica, to begin their 12-day tour which is scheduled to include seven games against Costa Rican professional, national, and Olympic teams.

The Beavers awoke Friday morning to find that their scheduled match with the professional Heredia squad had been moved up to 11 a.m.

A weary Orange and Black squad took the field against the fresh Heredia team and battled to a scoreless standstill at the half. The Beavers withstood several scoring attacks from Heredia, and managed a few opportunities of their own.

It wasn't until late in the second half that Heredia managed a score from 30 yards out to provide the only tally of the day and earn the win.

Despite the narrow loss, fourth-year head coach Dana Taylor was pleased with his team's play in the opener.

'Having done this in the past, I knew the legs would not quite be there,' Taylor said. 'Our lack of focus from the travel was a huge difference in this game. However, in the second half, our players responded well and stepped up their performance. 'Outside of getting the result, I couldn't have scripted this first match of this tour any better.'

The coaching staff is using the trip to get the squad's nine newcomers accustomed to their teammates and determine players' roles on the team.

'Due to injuries, a lot of newcomers were able to gain valuable playing time,' Taylor said. 'I was pleased with what I saw out of them.'

A few changes in the game schedule have been made to include matches against Costa Rica's U-17 National Team as well as the country's Olympic team.

The Beavers' next match is Aug. 18, when they face Saprissa. OSU's regular season opens with a match at Gonzaga on Aug. 30; the home slate begins with the fourth annual OSU/Diadora Classic's first game against Cal-Riverside on Sept. 13.

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