During a Halloween weekend of ups and downs, the UCSB men’s club soccer team avoided a scare by placing second at the regional tournament in Stockton, Calif., keeping its bid to nationals and securing the #1 seed.
The appearance at nationals will be the second in as many years for Santa Barbara.
On Saturday, UCSB came from behind to beat LMU 2-1 in the first round of regionals.
LMU scored first, but, in the last 10 minutes of the game, sophomore forward Gerogi Milosezski matched the Lions’ goal. Just moments after, freshman forward Nick Perera scored the winning goal to put Santa Barbara into Sunday’s championship round.
Unlike in Saturday’s win, the Gauchos were unable to come from behind, losing to UC Berkeley.
“We pretty much dominated the whole game,” Gaucho senior goalie Trent Plyler said. “They scored just before the first half ended. It was a nice shot and there was nothing we could do about it.”
The Gauchos were unable to score against the Bears and lost 1-0, but they still finished second at the California League Tournament.
“It was our second loss all season,” Plyler said. “We went undefeated [in league] and won the California League.”
Nationals will be held at the University of Texas at Austin beginning on Nov. 18.
“We have two weeks of hard training,” Plyler said. “We have big aspirations of bringing the trophy home this year.”
Last year UCSB won the open bracket championship, securing a spot in the championship round this year.