October 22, 2011
UCSB Unable to Overcome UC Riverside
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – There is a first
time for everything and on Saturday night at Meredith Field at
Harder Stadium, UC Riverside won its first match in Santa Barbara.
The Highlanders defeated No. 15 UC Santa Barbara, 3-2, to snap
their 10-game losing skid on the Gauchos' pitch.
With the loss, UCSB fell to 9-5-1 on the season and 2-4 in the
Big West. This marks the first time the Gauchos have lost four
conference games since the 2000 season when they were still members
of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. During that season, Tim
Vom Steeg's second at the helm of the program, UCSB went 2-4-1 in
Riverside improves to 8-5-2 and 3-3-1 in league games.
The Highlanders got on the scoreboard first in the 27th
minute. Azeez Atanda passed the ball off to Richie Osborne who
streaked down the right side of the field, beat his defender and
sent a high arching shot to the top left corner of the Gaucho
UCSB did not trail for long though. Sam Garza
took a shot in the 30th
minute and a handball was called
on a Highlander defender in the box. Luis Silva
took the penalty kick and buried the ball in the upper right side
of the Riverside goal, tying the game at 1-1.
Riverside was the first to score in the second half when
Joseph O'Connor fed the ball to Jon-Paul Medina on a fast break.
Medina shot the ball to the lower left corner of the goal to regain
the lead for UCR.
The Gauchos once again had a quick response for the
Highlanders. Silva sent the ball to Garza, who ran down the right
side of the field before sending a shot to the top left corner of
the UCR goal.
In the 72nd
minute, the Highlanders got another
fast break opportunity. Machael
was called for a foul at the top of the box and a penalty
kick was awarded to Riverside. Cesar Pizarro went right with his
shot while goalkeeper André
went left and the Highlanders sealed up the 3-2
UCSB led the shot count 20-7 in the loss with an 8-7 shots
on-goal advantage and an 11-3 count in corner kicks. Silva and
Garza led all players with five shots apiece. The latter had four
shots on-goal. Goalkeeper Cody Suppe was solid in the goal for the
Highlanders, making six stops.
Already playing without starting defender Tim
due to a red card violation at Cal Poly, the Gaucho
defense suffered a pair of major blows on Saturday night. Mathew
suffered a head injury in the 23rd
and had to leave the game prematurely. Then, in the 78th
minute, David had to be carried off the field with a leg
UCSB will remain at home to host league-leader UC Davis on
Wednesday, Oct. 26 in a 7 p.m. match-up at Meredith Field at Harder
Stadium. To purchase tickets, visit the Ticket Office in the ICA
Building on campus, call (805) 893-UCSB or buy online by clicking