Oct. 20, 2010
Fullerton, Calif. -
Ruben Valencia scored twice in the span of 34 seconds Wednesday night to break a 1-1 tie and lift UC RIverside to a 3-2 Big West Conference men's soccer victory at Cal State Fullerton.
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The Highlanders (4-9-1, 1-5-0) snapped a 5-game losing streak and 6-game winless streak and avenged a 2-1 home loss to Fullerton on Oct. 9. The Titans (5-7-2, 3-3-0) saw the end of their modest 3-game winning streak, their longest in four seasons.
Nick Posthuma scored both Fullerton goals and the Titans peppered several shots in the final minutes at UCR goalkeeper Cody Suppe, who was making his season's debut and finished with 5 saves.
All three UCR goals came after mishandled balls by the Titans. Arnie Sanchez got UCR ahead in the 30th minute when a backwards pass to Lucas Clardy found Sanchez' foot after Clardy slipped on the damp turf. Sanchez came in alone on Trevor Whiddon and beat the CSF goalkeeper to the left post for a 1-0 lead.
Posthuma was at the scoring end of a classic counter-attack goal by the Titans in the seventh minute of the second half. Jonathan Birt sent a long lead pass down the right side, Ritchie Gonzalez dribbled into the box and sent a deep cross that a streaking Posthuma touched past Suppe for a 1-1 tie.
Valencie's first goal came at 55:41 when Whiddon challenged him near the top of the box and didn't control the ball. Valencia flicked it over the keeper and had an empty net for his second goal of the year. Moments later, Whiddon's clearing pass to the left side was weak and intercepted by Sanchez, who fed it back to Valencia for an easy 2-on-1 goal at 56:15.
Posthuma's second goal of the night and team-high seventh of the season came with just under 10 minutes to play. Kevin Venegas had a free kick from the left side of the penalty box and Posthuma redireccted the ball into the net.
A Venegas free kick in the waning minutes got past Suppe but he was able to recover and grab the ball before it crossed the goal line. The Titans got the ball into the goal mouth a couple more times but couldn't get a clean shot.
Fullerton visits nationally ranked UC Irvine on Saturday night while UCR has the weekend off before hosting UCI next Wednesday.
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