The #17 UCSB men’s soccer team stayed undefeated in Big West play on Friday Night with a 3-1 win at Cal Poly. With the victory, the Gauchos improved to 3-0-1 in the conference and 11-1-1 overall.
Senior Gaucho forward Rob Friend, who leads the Big West in goals, added to his lead with his 13th of the season and first of the game in the 40th minute. Friend has now contributed a goal in the last 15 Gaucho wins, dating back to last season. Santa Barbara took a 1-0 lead into the half.
In the opening minute of the second half, junior midfielder David McGill scored on a penalty kick, to help the Gauchos surge ahead 2-0. The Santa Barbara lead increased to 3-0 when junior midfielder Darren Doi scored the first goal of his career in the 67th minute on a cross from McGill.
The Mustangs finally got on the board in the 83rd minute. Sophomore midfielder Eibad Ghori emerged from a scramble for the ball to put it in the back of the net from six yards out. The assists went to Scott Gellman and Colm Shalvey for Cal Poly.
The Mustangs had their chances to score throughout the game, however sophomore goalkeeper Danny Kennedy led the stingy Santa Barbara defense with eight saves. On what might have been Cal Poly’s best chance to get back into the game, Gellman missed on a penalty kick in the 76th minute when Kennedy came up with the clutch save for Santa Barbara. The Gauchos have now taken three straight over the Mustangs.
With the loss, Cal Poly falls to 1-3 in the Big West and 3-10 overall. The Mustangs come to Santa Barbara next Saturday for a 7 p.m. game at Harder Stadium.
-Nexus Staff Report