Hornets fall short late against UC Santa Barbara

Clifton Jones

Sacramento State’s lack of a prolific scorer was evident in the loss against UC Santa Barbara Tuesday.

The Hornets were in a tight match but fell to the 17th ranked Gauchos 2-1.

Head coach Mike Linenberger knew what was at stake against the Big West foe.

“Before the game we talked about how much we were still in it to make a Big West tournament berth,” Linenberger said. “We had a chance to come in here for a win and we went for it tonight.”

Sac State found itself down early in the match when UCSB’s Goffin Boyoko put the ball past Hornets senior goalkeeper Cesar Castillo. It was the lone goal in the half for either team.

Freshman defender Javier Munoz collided with a UCSB forward near the end of the first half and was immediately taken off the field. Men’s soccer head coach Mike Linenberger said he is unsure how serious the injury to Munoz is.

“[Munoz] tweaked his knee pretty bad in the first half,” Linenberger said. “We have to just wait and see how he is feeling tomorrow.”

Eight minutes into the second half, Sac State scored to tie the game at one. Sophomore midfielder Edwin Luna scored his second goal of the season when he placed a free kick from 18 yards out past the diving hands of UCSB’s Josh McNeely.

Luna said he honestly didn’t plan to score that free kick off the set piece, but rather to cross the ball to set up a chance.

“All I was thinking about in that moment is about how my soccer idol, Cristiano Ronaldo would do it all the time,” Luna said. “The next thing I know I saw the ball go past the hand of the goalie.”

Luna had a second chance with another free kick from 18 yards out but McNeely got enough of the shot to deflect it above the net for a corner kick.

Sac State found itself out of position in the 72nd minute when UCSB’s Ismaila Jome  scored what would be the game winning goal.

Sac State will look to rebound against Causeway rival UC Davis at 3 p.m. Saturday in Davis, Calif.