The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Matadors Sink UCSD 2-1 with Ricketts’ Brace

Aliyah Hinckley
File Photo. Midfielder Jorge Solorzano, 7, celebrates scoring a goal in the second half of the game against CSU Fullerton at the Matador Soccer Field in Northridge, Calif., on Sept. 27, 2023.

CSUN Matadors (4-6-6, 2-3-2 Big West) secured a crucial victory in their Big West home match against the UC San Diego Tritons (4-9-3, 3-3-1 Big West) at the Matador Soccer Field on Wednesday, Oct. 18.

Forward Jamar Ricketts was the hero for the Matadors, as he scored in his fourth consecutive Big West game. Ricketts accumulated the five goals scored in CSUN’s last four matches, including finding the back of the net twice last Wednesday. He described the grit the Matadors displayed throughout the match.

“We were in a slump for a little while,” Ricketts said. “But once you’re at rock bottom, the only way you can go is up.”

Neither team was able to produce any clear chances until the 38th minute, when the Matadors produced two shots on the goal. Tritons goalkeeper Mitchell Wilson saved each shot.

Head coach Terry Davila talked about the motivation he provided the Matadors following the missed chances in the first half.

“We needed to be a little more precise going forward, and take more chances.” Davila said.

Almost immediately after kickoff, a long ball by Sebastian Fuentes was met by Ricketts, who sprinted towards the Tritons goal and dribbled past goalkeeper Wilson, opening the scoring for the Matadors.

San Diego’s Iñaki Iribarren scored the equalizer off a rebound four minutes later, as he got past Matadors’ goalkeeper Merrick Cook.

Finally, midfielder Jorge Solorzano played a chipped lob in the 85th minute. This caused Ricketts to put the Matadors ahead 2-1 when he managed to get the first touch with his right foot. The Matadors would go on to hold off the Tritons and prevent an equalizer.

Ricketts discussed more about his consistency with scoring goals for the Matadors.

“We build up tactics to open me up, find pockets, and I’ve been more on the offensive side to hunt the ball.” Ricketts said. “I feel like it’s one of my gifts, using my speed and being able to find myself on the ball.”

The Matadors secured their second consecutive win and first home conference victory, and now sit one spot away from qualifying for the Big West playoffs. Davila further discussed the difficulty surrounding the Big West conference.

“We are glad to have an opportunity to play big matches that mean something,” Davila stated. “And we are grateful to be in the Big West.”

The Matadors subsequently stayed on home turf, where they drew with UC Santa Barbara 2-2 on Saturday night. They played their final Big West fixture of the season at UC Riverside the following Saturday October 29th recording a goalless draw.

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