Nov. 2, 2003
MORAGA, Calif. - No. 5 Santa Clara men's soccer scored twice in the first half and held on for a 2-1 victory over Saint Mary's Sunday afternoon at Garaventa Field on the SMC campus in Moraga, Calif. The win moves the Broncos' record to 12-2-3 overall and 4-0-0 in West Coast Conference play while dropping the Gaels to 6-11-0 overall and 1-4-0 in league action.
Santa Clara got on the board early as Kelechi Igwe scored his fourth goal of the season off a great crossing pass from Will Weatherly in the 21st minute. Igwe's goal was from only four yards out as Weatherly sent the ball from the left corner after a perfect lead pass from Jason Cunliffe in the middle started the play. All Igwe had to do was slide the ball past Saint Mary's netminder Kellan Wilson for the 1-0 lead, he did so with a blast into the left half of the net.
Just five minutes later freshman Erik Ustruck netted his third goal of the year as he blasted a knuckling ball from 40 yards out that fooled Wilson for a 2-0 lead. Ustruck was left all alone on the right of the field and found the back of the goal with the perfectly placed shot into the upper left corner.
Saint Mary's drew closer in the 80th minute when David Vedder collected a pass from teammate Michael Johnson and placed it into the left portion of the net, beating SCU keeper Steve Cronin. Vedder took the headed ball and used his chest to knock the ball down to his feet where he one-timed it from six yards out, cutting the Broncos' lead down to 2-1.
The Gaels could get no closer however as the Bronco defense held on for the hard fought victory. Cronin ended the match with three saves in the victory for SCU.
Santa Clara returns to action next weekend as San Diego invades Buck Shaw Stadium Saturday evening. Game time is slated for 7 p.m. With a victory over the Toreros next weekend the Broncos would clinch the WCC title as USD dropped its first league match at Portland Sunday afternoon and fell to 4-1-0 in conference play.