By Jose Trujillo (@jay_ay_t):
The San Jose State men’s soccer team (2-7-1, 0-2-1 MW) remained winless in Western Athletic Conference play after a 5-2 loss to University of Nevada Las Vegas (6-4-0, 2-0-0 MW) on Friday afternoon.
Both teams got off to a quick start, though the Rebels were helped by a costly SJSU mistake in the 4th minute from junior goalkeeper Alex Clewis.
After a corner kick by UNLV, Clewis was whistled for kicking an opposing player which resulted in senior forward and pro-prospect Danny Musovski netting the game’s first goal via penalty kick.
“We can’t be giving goals away, especially through ill-discipline, we can do that, we are not there yet,” said SJSU head coach Simon Tobin.
The Spartans had no room for mental mistakes. Alongside the almost unstoppable Musovski who recorded his second hat-trick of the season, the Rebels presented a unique playing style.
“They play Danny [Musovski] high, and the play two very very wide players, different than any team we have faced, they hug the line,” Tobin said. “They get the ball, switch it very quick to one against one.”
Even then, the team did not let the early mistake and UNLV’s play style from deterring their confidence.
Less than one minute after the Musovski penalty kick, the Spartans tied the game with a goal from senior defender Carlos Valdovinos; his first of the season.
Then it was the Rebels turn in the 9th minute as Musovski scored his second goal the day, putting the Rebels back on top 2-1.
The Spartans responded in the 16th minute as junior defensive midfielder Andrew Mendoza also scored his first goal of the season to make the score 2-2.
UNLV would score again, and at halftime the scoreboard read 3-2 in the Rebel’s favor.
Though the team was down, senior defender Joseph Kay expressed how the first half showed the teams fight and resiliency.
“We showed real fight, to concede two [goals], and come back and level it up,” Kay said..”I think we proved that we are capable of doing coming back.”
As the second half came along, the Spartans could not match their first half intensity
The team was held scoreless and gave up two more goals in what became a frustrating half for SJSU.
For junior midfielder Jonathan Partida, the result of the game is nothing the Spartans have not experienced this season.
“Two goals in 20 minutes is just too much… I just want us to improve on minor mistakes because all season long, silly goals and undeserved goals have hurt us,” Partida said.
Those minor mistakes have translated to the win-loss column.
With the recent loss, the Spartans are now going on 29 days since their last victory, a 2-0 win over Saint Mary’s.
San Jose State will not have much time to dwell on the loss as it hosts Grand Canyon University at 3 p.m. on Sunday.