Titans, UCR Tie Again

Oct. 26, 2011

Box Score

Riverside, Calif. - It was deja vu all over again for the Cal State Fullerton and UC Riverside men's soccer teams Wednesday night.

Just as occurred on Oct. 15 in Fullerton, the Titans got a first-half goal, the Highlanders scored in the second half and neither team could score in overtime resulting in the teams' second 1-1 Big West Conference tie this season. UCR remained unbeaten in its last four matches and went to 8-5-3 overall and 3-3-2 in the Big West while Fullerton goes home 7-5-4 and 1-4-2.

Oscar Aguero gave Fullerton the lead with 13:13 remaining in the first period. A ball came loose on the left side and he gained control, took a couple of dribbles in traffic and fired from about 25 yards out, beating Cody Suppe to the upper left corner.

UCR tied it midway through the second half. Ivan Garcia gained possession on the left side and sent a cross towards the far post where Cesar Diaz Pizarro was waiting unmarked and he quickly beat Trevor Whiddon to tie the score.

"It was tough to not come away with a win tonight," said Fullerton Head Coach Bob Ammann. "We certainly aren't happy with the draw and felt we should have locked the game up in the first half. We very easily could have been up 3-0 at the break. I don't think Riverside ever really challenged us throughout the first 45 minutes. Oscar Aguero scored a great goal and everything was looking bright.

"Unfortunately, the second half was a bit of a struggle as we didn't take good enough care of the ball at a time when they were really chasing the game and fighting to get back into it. This was the main reason we gave up the equalizer.

"It was a very physical game. By the time Riverside equalized, two of our starting back four had been taken off with injuries from challenges and were never able to return to the game. To make things worse it looks as if one is lost for the year, unfortunately.

"The players that came in did well and I thought we did a good job in the final 10 minutes of regulation to wrestle the game back. We created some of the best chances of the match in the dying minutes, but had nothing to show for them."

Ritchie Gonzalez had a golden opportunity with about 20 seconds left but volleyed a shot from close range well over the net.

UCR's Eric Johanson had a similar result from even closer early in overtime.

The Titans suffered at least two significant injuries. Defenders Jonathan Birt and Fermin Villalba both had to be helped off the field with leg injuries and did not return to action.

Whiddon and Suppe each finished with 7 saves and the Highlanders got a pivotal team save in overtime after Aguero again beat Suppe.

Fullerton hosts UC Santa Barbara Saturday night.