Revenge Not Served as Bears Drop Consecutive Home Games

UCLA and SDSU Hand Cal Men's Soccer Team Four Straight Losses in Two Weekends of Play

Photo: <Cal defender Kyle Lunt</b> chases after the ball during the Bears' loss to San Diego State on Sunday at Edwards Stadium.
Eddie Rosenbaum/Staff
chases after the ball during the Bears' loss to San Diego State on Sunday at Edwards Stadium.

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San Diego State 2
Cal 0

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In a weekend of rematches, the Cal men's soccer team couldn't capitalize on the chance to avenge its two losses last weekend in Southern California.

In the build-up to their match against San Diego State, the No. 20 Bears honored their five graduating seniors -- Jeff Cosgriff, Evan Sassano, Jacob Wilson, Imaan Kerchgani and Patrick Fry -- but couldn't come away with a win.

Instead, Cal fell to the Aztecs, 2-0, on Sunday at Edwards Stadium in its final home game of the season, finishing a disappointing weekend.

The Bears (8-7-0, 2-5-0 in the Pac-10) started well, benefiting from a renewed offensive intensity and defensive solidity witnessed earlier in the season.

"It looked like the first 15 or 20 minutes we had everything going for us," coach Kevin Grimes said. "Everything that we wanted to do in the first half really materialized, and the ball just didn't go in. I think if one of those goes in, we've got a different game."

"Those" were the several chances to score just barely missed by Cal. Forward Andrew Wiedeman was inches off target, another ball was cleared off the line by a defender and Cosgriff's header sailed just wide of the post. The Bears' offense was pouring in shots with no results.

The momentum shift came in the 30th minute, when Raymundo Reza slid a short range shot home to take the lead. It was the first shot of the game for San Diego State (6-4-4, 3-2-2).

"They did a good job of counter-attacking," Grimes said. "For 30 minutes they hadn't had a shot on goal, and they scored two goals on their first two shots of the game. Sometimes that happens in soccer."

The team looked shaken by the goal, and it took another hit when midfielder Hector Jimenez went down shortly after with a knee injury. The severity of the injury is unknown.

"I think it was tough to regroup at the time," Grimes said. "We were all worried and concerned about Hector. The guys did the best they could; it just wasn't going to happen."

Seven minutes later, Reza scored again, this time in a flurry of activity in the face of the goal. Despite outshooting the Aztecs 12-8 in the course of the match, Cal never found the back of the net.

The loss came on the heels of a tough 1-0 defeat to No. 2 UCLA on Friday, the same score as their match in Los Angeles the week before.

The Bears made it competitive, forcing Bruins keeper Brian Perk into several saves, including an acrobatic leap to deflect Wiedeman's shot from the top right corner of the goal.

But the day would belong to UCLA (9-1-2, 4-0-2) after Kyle Nakazawa's third and final shot found the back of the net a few minutes before halftime.

Closing out the Pac-10 season is now a major priority for Cal, even if the lineups are a little uncertain.

"It will all be dependent on the injuries really, see who is back," Grimes said. "We have so many guys out, and without knowing exactly who can go ... we'll probably have to change something."


Contact Nicole Baudouin at [email protected]

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