Sept. 22, 2006
Santa Clara, Calif. - The 15th ranked Santa Clara men's soccer team earned a 0-0 overtime tie with the visiting San Jose State University Spartans in a Rivalry Series match on Friday night at Buck Shaw Stadium. The Broncos, looking to rebound from two losses last weekend, came out strong and fired 23 shots at the Spartan net, but could not come away with a goal. Joseph Buttitta played a solid game in net to earn his third shutout of the year as the Broncos pushed their record to 4-2-2. Junior Matt Hatzke returned to the lineup and provided solid play in the defense alongside junior Matt Marquess, junior Jamil Roberts and freshman Chris Sauter to keep the Spartans at bay.
The game started out a even pace as neither team was able to create many clear-cut chances early on. The Broncos three-man frontline of senior Keith DeVey, freshman Amaechi Igwe and sophomore Brian Martin could not find many openings during the run of play.
On set pieces, however, SCU was able to generate some attacks as Stephen McCarthy and Jamil Roberts both nearly gave the Broncos the lead 11 minutes into the game. Peter Lowry set up McCarthy for a header that was saved. Moments later a free kick set up Roberts for another opportunity but San Jose State goalkeeper Richard Mann was there to make the save.
While the first half did not bring a goal for either team, the Broncos stormed out of gate after halftime looking to break the deadlock. Less than two minutes into the half, Jeff Cosgriff got himself free but his blast went wide of the goal. Freshman Chris Sauter then got on the end of the corner kick but his close-range shot was smothered by Mann.
Despite the pressure from SCU, the Spartans came back with a great opportunity in the 58th minute but Diego Soto's shot sailed high.
Santa Clara continued to push forward as the game headed into the final minutes with four different players having chances to put the Spartans away in the final 20 minutes. Igwe stared the flurry with a shot from close-range that went just high. Cosgriff followed with a shot with under 10 minutes to go just past the left post and Martin then ripped a shot that whistled by the opposite post just a minute later.
The Broncos best chance to win the game in regulation came off the foot of freshman Sean Danzeiser on a great individual effort. After forcing a turnover by the Spartans' defense, Danzeiser found himself in alone with Mann, but his right-footed shot was saved by the San Jose State goalkeeper.
In overtime, Sauter almost made himself a hero on the Mission Campus, but Mann robbed him with a spectacular diving save to preserve the tie. Lowry swung in a corner that Sauter was able to re-direct to the corner before Mann dove and tipped the ball just past the post. On the ensuing corner kick, Cosgriff headed a shot over the bar on what would prove to be the Broncos last true opportunity of the evening.
On Sunday, Sept. 24, SCU will open its West Coast Conference slate with a big match against the University of San Francisco on the road. The game kicks off at 7:00 p.m. PT from Negoesco Stadium in San Francisco. The Broncos and the Dons were picked to finish at the top of the WCC in the preseason coaches poll. Fans can follow the action live at SantaClaraBroncos.com.