Box Score (PDF)
FULLERTON, Calif. – The Cal State Fullerton men's soccer team and UC Riverside tied 2-2 Saturday night at Titan Stadium, after the two teams fighting for playoff spots could not come up with a game-winner to gain any separation in the Big West South Division standings.
The Highlanders came back strong in the 24th minute when some stylish dribbling by UCR's Ricardo Ruiz freed up his right foot for a cross into the Fullerton box. The ball sailed over a CSF defender to an open Michael Salazar who headed the ball past Titan keeper Jeff Salt to make the score 1-1.
A Highlander counter-attack in the 37th minute put them up by one. Another display of dribbling in the Fullerton defensive zone created the Highlander goal, only this time it was Otis Earle who made a move before crossing the ball to Juan Mendoza, who put it in making the score 2-1.
The second-half was a battle as UCR tried to hold on to their lead, but in the 67th minute a hard challenge from Earle earned him his second yellow card of the game and UC Riverside was forced to play a man down. Titan forward Amara Soumah capitalized on this advantage in the 73rd minute to tie the score 2-2. Ramos picked up his second assist on the night when he sent a corner kick into the box that found the head of Garrett Losse, he headed it on to Soumah who put the ball past John and into the net.
The physical play continued, evidenced by the total number of fouls called, 31 for Cal State Fullerton and 28 for UC Riverside. A tackle from behind in the 84th minute earned UCR's Stephen Copley a red card as the Highlanders went from playing one man down, to two men down with 10 minutes left to play.
UC Riverside hunkered down for the rest of the match to earn the tie, and in doing so preserved its one-point lead on Fullerton in the South Division standings, UCR now has 12 points while Fullerton has 11.
Fullerton is back on the pitch Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. in Northridge, Calif. to take on CSUN in a Big West South Division game at Matador Soccer Field.
Notes: Fullerton's all-time series record against UC Riverside is now 15-10-6…UCR and Fullerton's other game this season, on Oct. 25, in Riverside, Calif., also ended in a draw, the final score was 1-1 in double overtime…The 59 combined fouls in this game is the most in a Cal State Fullerton men's soccer game this season…The results from the South Division tonight leaves UC Irvine still on top with 13 points, UC Riverside in second with 12, Cal State Fullerton in third with 11 and CSUN in fourth with 10…Cal State Fullerton and CSUN play Wednesday night in Northridge, Calif. to determine who will go on to play in the Big West playoffs…Saturday night was senior night for 12 Titan student-athletes: Jordan Wolff, Gabriel Quintero, Marc Fenelus, Amara Soumah, Garrett Losee, Alex Cannas, Ian Ramos, Fermin Villalba, Mark Vasquez, Spencer Johnson, Jesse Vega, and Ritchie Gonzalez.