Soccer: Titans Fall To SLO

Cal State Fullerton's men's soccer lost a heartbreaker Saturday night, falling to the Cal Poly San Luis Obispo Mustangs in a 1-0 conference defeat. CSUF fell to 4-4 in the season and 0-1 in conference play. The Mustangs are now 6-1 and 1-0 in the Big West.

The play on the field had the audience screaming all night as the Mustangs continuously challenged the Titans to line up and down the field. Both sides of the ball played strong in their rivalry game.

The first period remained scoreless as both teams tried to keep control of the ball.

The Mustangs stacked the back of the field, forcing the Titans to be creative when it came to offensive drives. The strategy worked for the Mustangs though, as not many attempts were made at their goalkeeper Eric Branagan-Franco.

Fans could not stay in their seats during some of the play calls made by the officials, as the Mustangs racked up penalties and committed several violations. Fans were not shy about vocalizing their opinions.

CSUF came into the second half strong and was quickly shut down by the rampaging Mustangs.

The Mustangs racked up two yellow cards within the first two minutes of the half, causing a constant stream of booing to flow from the crowd.

The penalties did not deter the Mustangs, and freshman Daniel Gray drove in the first and only goal of the game five minutes into the second half.

Freshman Titan goalkeeper Tyler Andrews is still working on his game and is gaining more skill within the box.

Andrews placed himself between the ball and the net on several close calls from the opposing team . Andrews said he is gaining more confidence as he gets his hands on the ball more.

"We just broke down at the beginning of the second half there," Andrews said. "That is probably the worst time to get scored on and it is hard to come back from that."

Titans' Head Coach Bob Ammann voiced his opinion the entire game, leaving the comfort of the bench to scream orders to his players in an effort to rally his team.

The entire Titan bench stood as the second half neared completion. The seconds ticked while the men rallied to several close calls at the net, but the Mustangs deflected CSUF's incoming shots.

The final moments of tension came when the clock stopped with one second to go at the end of the game. CSUF was set up with a corner kick and a chance to tie, but a botched throw-in allowed the Mustangs to secure the victory.

"We always wind up in a rivalry with these guys," Titan senior forward Skyler Thuresson said. "We seem to go back and forth. Sometimes they win and sometimes we win. They just got the better of us this time."

Ammann was visibly disappointed with the way the game went.

"Obviously, they came out here with different intentions than ours," Ammann said. "We came to play soccer and they had something else in mind. That is obvious with the number of penalties out there."

Up next for the Titans are the Cal State Northridge Matadors. CSUN (4-2-1) is coming off of a shutout victory over UCLA on Friday night.