Men’s soccer ends 2023 regular season with 2-1 victory over Cal State San Bernardino

By Dylan Long, Nov. 7, 2023

The No. 5-ranked Cal Poly Pomona Broncos finished the regular season Thursday, Nov. 2 with a 2-1 victory against Cal State San Bernardino.

The win is CPP’s fifth in a row and its second five-game winning streak of the season. And this streak is coming at the perfect time, as the Broncos look to do something every team dreams of: enter the playoffs on a hot streak.

“It is a truly great thing to see us firing on all cylinders like this at the end of the season,” said CPP head coach Matt O’Sullivan. “Momentum is such an important thing in this game. We need to strike while the iron is hot and continue this run that we are on.”

Like most of their recent games, the Broncos started Thursday’s match on the attack from the opening whistle.

After a few promising chances early, CPP was able to strike in the 10th minute. The ball launched from the sidelines, finding midfielder Woody Angell in the penalty area. Angell made a move and fired the ball off of the right post to give the Broncos an early 1-0 lead.

The Broncos have thrived all season when they are able to grab an early lead. Thursday was no different.

“All year this group has been so good at putting pressure on the opponent by grabbing a lead early,” O’Sullivan said. “The goal is to put our opponent in a hole early and allow for the game to open up for us. We did an excellent job at that today.”

CPP was able to control the tempo for the rest of the first half and went into the break maintaining its 1-0 lead.

Defender Cesar Ruvalcaba battles the ball away from an attacker in a match against San Marcos Oct. 27. | Courtesy of CPP Athletics

Much like the first kick-off, CPP was able to start out strong at the beginning of the second half.

The Broncos added a second goal in the 64th minute from their All-American forward Paul Roger Henschke. CPP advanced a free kick onto the Yotes’ side of the field, where a left-footed cross found Henschke in the middle of the pitch. Henschke then booted the ball into the right side of the net for CPP’s second goal of the day. The goal increased Henschke’s team’s leading goal total to nine.

Scoring in the season finale was a fitting cap to the regular season for Henschke, who recently advanced to fourth in both career goals and career points in the CPP record book.

Henschke spoke on how special this season has been for everyone involved.

“It has been an honor to be a part of this team this year,” Henschke said. “What we have been able to accomplish so far is outstanding, but the real season starts now. This is where we find out what we are made of.”

The Broncos controlled the rest of the game after their second strike and kept the Yotes at bay until the final minute of the match. San Bernardino snuck in a last second goal, but it was too little, too late. The Broncos walked away with a 2-1 win and closed the book on an impressive regular season.

The CPP Broncos finished the season 12-1-4 overall and 8-1-2 in CCAA play. The Broncos will now head up north for the CCAA Tournament at Cal Poly Humboldt.

O’Sullivan hyped up the importance of next weekend’s CCAA Tournament.

“This team has played with intensity, class and discipline all season long,” O’Sullivan said. “They are very excited to advance to the next phase of our season and into postseason play, and that starts with the CCAA Tournament. We will be ready to go.”

Feature image courtesy of CPP Athletics


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