UCLA Rallies From Early Deficit To Defeat Cal State Fullerton, 2-1
Sept. 17, 2009
Los Angeles, CA - The No. 12/6 UCLA men's soccer team scored two unanswered goals after Cal State Fullerton took a 1-0 lead early and went on to defeat the Titans, 2-1, on Thursday night at Drake Stadium.
The Titans capitalized on a counterattack to get their fourth-minute goal. Matt Sanders took a shot from the right side that was saved by Bruin goalkeeper Brian Rowe, but the rebound went to an open Celso Alvarez, who easily finished to give Fullerton a 1-0 lead at the 3:08 mark.
The Bruins worked hard to even the score. Freshman Chandler Hoffman had two good opportunities to tie, getting ahead of the defense in the 11th minute but just missing wide and also taking a shot in the 21st minute that had to be saved by Fullerton goalkeeper Trevor Whiddon. In the 30th minute, Sean Alvarado's header after a Kyle Nakazawa free kick missed just wide, and Amobi Okugo's shot was saved in the 32nd minute.
Bruin freshman Evan Raynr finally evened the score at 37:05 after a long pass from the backfield found Hoffman ahead of the defense. Hoffman passed to David Estrada in the box, and Estrada dribbled before sending the ball to Raynr on the right side. The freshman from Calabasas finished with an shot to the far post for his second goal in as many games.
Fullerton had a good opportunity to regain the lead in the 61st minute when Oscar Aguero took a shot that Rowe saved at the near post. Erick Escobedo got the rebound, but his follow-up shot was blocked by the Bruin defense. That stop proved to be big, as UCLA defender Shawn Singh put UCLA ahead four minutes later at 64:34 after taking a shot from a hard angle. Whiddon got a hand on the ball, but it skipped past him into the back of the net. The goal was the first of Singh's collegiate career.
Rowe had a career-high five saves in his first career start for UCLA (3-1). Whiddon also had five saves for the Titans (3-2).
'At the end of the day, it was a good win after going down 1-0 and not having the best start,' said UCLA head coach Jorge Salcedo. 'As the first half wore on, we got better and had more energy and were able to get the win. Sometimes winning ugly is okay as long as you win. We grew a little bit being down and coming back.'