Nov. 19, 2005
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Senior forward Ivan Becerra snapped a scoreless tie with a goal in the 58th minute and senior forward Jonathan Davis added an insurance marker in the 79th minute as 21st-ranked UC Santa Barbara blanked visiting San Diego State in the first round of the NCAA Tournament Saturday.
The Gauchos and Aztecs battled through a physical first half that ended scoreless. SDSU goalkeeper Tally Hall, who finished the match with four saves overall, made two stellar saves in the first half to keep UCSB in check. Hall stopped point-blank shots by Davis and junior midfielder Eric Frimpong in the final 20 minutes of a first half that was dominated by Santa Barbara.
The second half started much the same as the first half had ended with UCSB in the San Diego end of the field and at tthe 57:08 mark, the Gauchos finally broke through.
Sophomore midfielder Tyler Rosenlund carried the ball into the box near the right side. Rosenlund found fellow-sophomore Andrew Proctor just above the center of the box. Hall came well of his line to cut the angle, but Proctor found Becerra streaking down the left-hand side of the box. Becerra dribbled the ball behind an off-balanced Hall and slid one inside the far post.
UCSB made it 2-0 at 78:28. Rosenlund was near the center of the field at the top of the box. He slid a pass to Davis who was outside the upper right side. Davis dribbled the ball into the box and towards the end line and from an impossible angle, he sent a missile over Hall and into the upper right portion of the goal.
SDSU never challenged after that and UCSB goalkeeper Kyle Reynish needed just three saves to record his ninth shutout of the season, the third most in Gaucho history.
In the final minutes the match got particularly physical and seven cards were handed out. The Aztecs, in fact, received a pair of red cards in the second half, hampering their chances to muster a comeback.
UCSB has now won an NCAA playoff match in four straight seasons. The Gauchos, who were NCAA finalists in 2004, will travel to Cal State Northridge on Tuesday, Nov. 22, for a 1:00 p.m. second round NCAA match. The game will pit a pair of Big West powers and rivals.
The victory improves Santa Barbara's record to 12-4-3 overall. San Diego State completes its season with a record of 9-4-3. This marked the Aztecs' first appearance in the NCAA Tournament since 1989.