The CSUN men’s soccer team was unable to hold onto a 2-1 lead as the UC Davis Aggies scored a goal with exactly one minute left in regulation to tie the game Oct. 1 at Matador Soccer Field.
With time winding down, UC Davis’ midfielder Ian Conklin crossed the ball into the box where defender Paul Cain managed to get off a header into the goal to tie the game at 2-2.
It was the third game this season the Matadors allowed a goal in the final five minutes.
“It’s a few times it’s happened this season and we’ve got to not take mental lapses late in the game,” midfielder Taylor Canel said. “We’ve just got to keep working at it. Stay focused and everyone’s go to be on the same page.”
The tie puts CSUN’s record at 3-3-4 while the Aggies recorded their first tie of the season to put them at 6-4-1. Both UC Davis and CSUN have yet to lose a match to a Big West opponent this season. The Aggies, who are in their third year of reclassification from Division II to Division I, are 4-0-1 against Big West opponents. The Matadors are 1-0-2 in conference play.
For the third game in a row the Matadors jumped out ahead first, scoring in the fourth minute. Canel lofted an overhead pass to forward Sunghyun Kim, who managed to get his shot off and into the right side of the net past Aggie goalkeeper Charles Warne to give them the 1-0 lead.
The goal is Kim’s fourth of the season, putting him in a tie for team leader with Ryan Rossi, who was not playing in the game due to injury.
UC Davis turned up the pressure for the rest of the first half in an effort to tie the game. CSUN goalkeeper Kevin Guppy made four saves in the half, including a stop in the 14th minute on a midfielder Ahmad Hatifie shot attempt.
The Matadors barely managed to escape the first half with the lead. Defender Matt Tracy was given a yellow card for a foul committed just outside the left side of the penalty box. Aggies’ forward Quincy Amarikwa took the free kick, which got past Guppy but deflected off of the post and was cleared out by CSUN.
Amarikwa proved to be a nuisance for the Matadors in the second half. Amarikwa showcased his speed, managing two early second half shot attempts that were unsuccessful. His first was a one-on-one situation against CSUN defender Chad Borak in which he took a shot that hooked far right. Amarikwa penetrated the Matadors’ backline again but defender Sean Franklin managed to chase him down and Guppy was able to take possession of the ball.
In the 54th minute Amarikwa finally managed to tie the game. He took the ball in on his own, beating the backline, and sent a chipped shot over Guppy and into the back of the net for the score.
“He’s a hard-working player,” said head coach Terry Davila about Amarikwa.
However, the tie held on for only 13 minutes as the Matadors pulled ahead once again. Midfielder Fergie Agwu deflected a kick off of an Aggie defender that landed in Moy Gomez’s possession. Gomez managed to beat Warne and send a shot into the left side of the net for the 2-1 lead.
In overtime neither team was able to take advantage despite a strong Matador effort as they outshot the Aggies four shots to one.
Agwu and Kim had two opportunities in overtime for the Matadors. Agwu sent a left-footed roller that was saved by Warne. Kim followed up with a shot that hooked right.
For only the third time this season, CSUN was out-shot by their opponent 18-16.
Guppy recorded four saves in the match while his counterpart had two.
Though not as physical as the match against UC Santa Barbara, the game definitely proved to be intense with 43 total fouls, 22 on Northridge.
“Our conference is known to be a physical conference,” said Canel. “With the conference doing as well as it is, the games mean more now so there’s a lot of intensity.”
Next on task, the Matadors hit the road to take on the Cal State Fullerton Titans on Oct. 4 at Titan Stadium.