Dec. 10, 2004
CARSON, Calif. -
The bus carrying the UC Santa Barbara men's soccer team to its NCAA College Cup Semifinal match at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., broke down on Friday night and the Gauchos were 20 minutes late arriving for their game against Duke.
The bus breakdown was the only thing that went wrong for UCSB Friday.
The Gauchos scored twice in the first half, including a Drew McAthy goal just 1:02 into the match, and they went on to win, 5-0, advancing to their first-ever NCAA Championship match. UCSB will play Indiana, a 3-2 double overtime winner over Maryland, on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. at the Home Depot Center.
McAthy gave Santa Barbara a 1-0 lead just 1:02 into the match. Tony Lochhead hit a corner kick to the far post where McAthy was waiting. The senior headed the ball to the inside of goalkeeper Justin Trowbridge and off of defender Blake Camp for his 16th goal of the season.
UCSB made it 2-0 at the 34:40 mark. Lochhead brought the ball up the left sideline and past a defender. From just outside the penalty box, Lochhead lofted a pass to McAthy who shoved it to forward Jonathan Davis on his right. Davis dribbled past a pair of defenders and pounded one past Trowbridge.
The Gauchos continued the onslaught in the second half. At the 59:23 mark, Lochhead took a free kick from about 25 yards out. He arced a shot over the wall and into the right side of the net to make it 3-0.
In the 66th minute, McAthy scored his second goal of the match and 17th of the season. Bryan Byrne carried the ball up the right sideline and drifted left, about ten yards outside the penalty box. Byrne cracked a cross and McAthy flew in and drilled a header past Trowbridge.
Santa Barbara made it 5-0 at 68:04. Ivan Beccerra carried the ball down the left side of of the penalty box and hit a cross that Tino Nunez leaped for, but couldn't get his head on it. Matt Bly, however, was streaking from the right side and he ripped a shot into the left portion of the goal.
The 5-0 scored tied the NCAA Final Four record for largest margin of victory. In 1988, Indiana defeated Hartwick 5-0 in the semifinals. Senior goalkeeper Dan Kennedy posted his 13th complete game shutout of the season, recording seven saves in the process.
UCSB, which is now 21-2-1 overall, has won ten consecutive matches. The last two Gaucho wins, including a quarterfinal win over Virginia Commonwealth, have come by a combined 9-1 score. In fact, in their 4-0 NCAA Tournament run this season, UCSB has outscored its opponents by an 12-2 margin.
The Gauchos will now play for their first National Championship ever when they take on Indiana on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. UCSB has already beaten the Hoosiers once this season, winning 1-0 in double overtime at Albuquerque on September 18.