Sept. 1, 2010
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. -
Two unfortunate bounces ended up being the difference in Wednesday night's season opener between the Cal State Northridge Matadors (0-1) and San Diego Toreros (1-0) as CSUN was defeated 2-0 at Matador Soccer Field.
Northridge now has three days of rest to prepare for their next contest, the first of a six-game road trip that begins at Loyola Marymount this Sunday at 4 p.m. Both a radio broadcast and Gametracker will be available for Sunday's match at GoMatadors.com.
After both teams battled to a scoreless tie at the end of the first half, San Diego was able to break through in the 53rd minute for the game's first goal.
A corner kick from San Diego midfielder Dan Delgado into the box toward Matador goalkeeper Michael Abalos started an unfortunate chain of events for CSUN. As Abalos went to make a play on the ball, he collided with San Diego's Cory Norris. The collision jarred the ball loose from the 'keeper's hands, finding the foot of Torero forward Jorge Reza, who easily put the ball into the back of the net from three yards out.
Many of the fans in attendance expected a foul to be called on the play, disallowing the goal. Instead, the referee motioned toward midfield allowing the goal to stand.
Undaunted, Northridge continued to press on offense, looking to net the equalizer to try and level the game at one apiece. Nine of the Matadors' 16 shots were taken in the second half, a testament to their aggressive play on offense once they trailed.
Another unlucky event, this time in the 78th minute, allowed San Diego to double their lead.
What looked to be a routine diving save by Abalos turned out to be anything but, as a Torero shot deflected off the leg of another Torero en route to the net while the Matador 'keeper was on the ground. What would have been another sprawling save eventually ended up in the net as the deflection was corralled by Delgado, whose subsequent shot turned into the second goal of the match.
Led by midfielder Rene Anguiano and his two shots on goal, five different Matadors were able to fire away at Torero goalkeeper Michael D'Arrigo.
Were it not for the efforts of D'Arrigo, both of Anguiano's shots on goal could have ended up in the back of the net as well as the Torero netminder had to dive to his left to push the shots wide in order to preserve his clean sheet.
Midfielder Rafael Garcia was responsible for three of the Matadors' 16 shots, with midfielders Gustavo Villalobos and Daniel Yoon, defender Shawin Berenji, and forward Camilo Rojas taking two shots apiece. Playing in their first regular season match as a Matador, midfielders Alberto Rosas and Thomas Ramos taking their inaugural shots.
Returning to action after sitting out the 2009 season were midfielders Chris Leiva and Nicholas Hamilton, as each came off the bench and earned a solid amount of playing time for head coach Terry Davila.