CLAREMONT, Calif. – On a cool, clear evening inside William Rolland Stadium the Cal Lutheran men’s soccer team avenged an early season loss, their first in Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) play, which came at the feet of Whittier. Tonight the Kingsmen powered past the Poets, scoring the game-winner in the 58th minute.
Just more than a minute after Matt Hubbard brought fresh legs off the bench onto the field he found the back of the net on an assist from Tyler Pascoe to give CLU a 1-0 lead.
In the first half WC peppered the CLU goal with 11 shots while the Kingsmen generated just six and the Poets tacked on nine, one more than CLU, in the final half to finish with 20 with Cal Lutheran tallying 14, but the one that got through made all the difference. WC had a 16-3 advantage on corner kicks tonight as well.
Whittier had three consecutive opportunities on one play in the 20th minute, but CLU was able to clear the ball and Pascoewas just a touch behind the ball that found its way to the Whittier goalkeeper.
The teams battled to a scoreless 45th minute as neither side lit up the scoreboard in the opening half.
In the second stanza, CLU had a number of opportunities and remained focused and active until the final buzzer.
Over the final nine minutes Whittier earned three corner kicks and had a header attempt, but goalkeeper Jack Duncan came up with two huge stops to keep the Poets off the board and secure the victory for the Violet and Gold.
For CLU, Hubbard, Pascoe and Salvador Orozco all had two shots apiece with Orozco connecting for one on goal that was stopped by an incredible save from the Poets keeper. Ivan Sanchez had the only other shot on goal.
Using very few subs tonight, the starting 11 that included Duncan, Orozco, Pascoe, Sanchez, Jimmy Carter, Logan Cone, Gabriel Fernando, Thiago Gaglianone, Jorge Galvan, Bryce Truver and Tal Zaiet played the entirety of the first half and most played all 90 minutes. Duncan also played the whole game, adding eight saves to his season tally.
Whittier (10-6-1, 9-4-1 SCIAC) was paced by team-leading scorer Francis Maxwell who fired off a game-high six shots, though only one was on target. Ian Cromwell finished with four and Gregorio Giorgi tallied three. WC goalie Jorge Rivas was tagged with the loss after saving three shots.
Cal Lutheran (8-6-2, 6-5-2 SCIAC) rounds out the home portion of its 2013 schedule on Monday when the Kingsmen host Caltech at 7:00 p.m. Prior to the game the senior class will be recognized.