By Christian Ulrich, Oct. 25, 2022
On Oct. 21, The Cal Poly Pomona men’s soccer team took on Cal State East Bay in Hayward, coming away with a 4-0 victory and moving atop the California Collegiate Athletic Association standings at 6-0-3.
Scoring three goals in the first half and another in the second, Broncos head coach Matt O’Sullivan credited the team’s effort on defense as the deciding factor against the Pioneers.
“We were excellent tonight defensively,” said O’Sullivan. “There were moments where we put ourselves under stress for no reason, but we definitely worked hard to get out of them. And I thought the back line and our goalkeeper made some great saves and some fantastic clearances as well.”
The Broncos controlled the ball with pace five minutes into the match and were awarded a free kick early. Midfielder Mike Moser’s kick went wide left of the box and was tipped out of play by the Pioneers, for a Bronco corner kick.
Moser sent the corner into the box, only to be deflected out of play by the Pioneers, resulting in another corner kick for the Broncos. Moser put the ball directly in front of forward Jerry Ramirez for the header goal and the early lead off of the subsequent set piece.
“They were playing half man and half zone,” said Ramirez. “My man left a lot of space in the front of the goal. So, I ran into that open space, and the ball landed perfectly in front of me.”
One minute later, the Broncos struck again.
Upon kickoff, the Pioneers found themselves swarmed in their own zone. The Pioneers moved the ball around, avoiding the Broncos as best they could. Midfielder Mads Frederiksen then forced the ball out of play, resulting in a throw in for the Broncos.
Midfielder Melvyn Perez Cortez threw the ball in quickly to a streaking midfielder, Oscar Griehsel Facey, for a wide open goal, giving a Broncos a 2-0 advantage.
“Throughout the game, I noticed they were very cautious of following our strikers when they ran deep,” said Griehsel Facey. “On the throw in, Jerry ran towards the corner which opened up the center of the field. And also, I knew that Melvyn has a long throw, so I hung around the middle as much as possible. Melvyn threw the ball towards me, and the keeper didn’t come out too fast. So I was able to get to the ball and poke it in.”
Shortly before halftime, CPP scored one more time, this time from midfielder Max Laguna, who found himself in the right place at the right time for a rebound shot from forward Paul Roger Henschke.
Cal State East Bay struggled in the first half to find the net, having outshot the Broncos 7-6, the Pioneers found themselves down
The Pioneers opened the second half in similar fashion, with their best scoring chance coming at the 81-minute mark from defender Drew Gibbons. Gibbons shot one to the lower left half of the goal only to be stopped by CPP goaltender CJ Walker.
CPP allowed just three shots the entire second half, one of those a shot on goal.
At the 85-minute mark, the Broncos pushed the ball up the field just as they did all night: with ease. Forward Kevin Hernandez started the break into the Pioneer zone and passed the ball to Moser in the center of the box. Moser cut to the left and put the ball in the right corner of the net, giving the Broncos a commanding 4-0 lead.
O’Sullivan had this to say regarding his team’s performance: “We are a difficult team to play against because of how our set up is, sometimes we just play what teams give us. They gave us a lot of room on the outside today, and we took it. We felt like we could easily get up the field, and we did a good job on staying there.”
Feature image courtesy of CPP Athletics
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