The CSUN men’s soccer team did something few have been able to do for a long time – win in Las Vegas.
The Matadors won both of their games at the UNLV Adidas Classic over the weekend, defeating Cleveland State 2-0 on Friday evening and following that effort by winning against the host Runnin Rebels 1-0 on Sunday afternoon.
Against Cleveland State, it was a tale of two halves for CSUN, as the Matadors could only get off one shot attempt in the first half, but then turned it up in the second half with 13 attempts and getting two goals out of it.
Junior midfielder Devin Deldo delivered the first strike for CSUN in the 55th minute, as he received a pass from freshman midfielder Rafael Garcia and headed the ball past Cleveland State freshman goalkeeper Matt Harpel to the right side for his second goal of the year and Garcia’s first assist as a Matador.
Fourteen minutes later, senior midfielder Fergie Agwu delivered the second goal for CSUN, as he struck the ball past Harpel to the left post to widen CSUN’s lead.
Davila said the discrepancy between the two halves for the Matadors ranged from Cleveland State’s defense to strong winds, combined with the intense heat and poor air quality.
“The wind was pretty hard and it was very hot,” Davila said.
The win over Cleveland State also marked a milestone for junior goalkeeper Kevin Guppy, as he recorded his 15th solo shutout as a Matador, setting a new school record.
“(Guppy) keeps everyone levelheaded and he gives us the security that we need,” Davila said.
The match against UNLV on Sunday resembled the match against Cleveland State, as both teams played to a scoreless first half, then the Matadors got in front early in the second half and the defense took over from there. Garcia, who beat UNLV sophomore goalkeeper Calvin Bailey to the lower-left corner in the 52nd minute, provided the goal against the Runnin Rebels.
Both the Matadors and Runnin Rebels took 10 shots on goal and Guppy went on to record his 16th shutout as a Matador. UNLV goalkeeper Bailey made five saves for the Rebels.
Davila was happy with the way the team battled through not only its opponents, but also the weather conditions.
CSUN returns to Matador Soccer Field Thursday to take on the New Mexico Lobos at 4 p.m.
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