SDSU earns 1-0 win over UC Davis
Photo courtesy goaztecs.com
August 20, 2017 (San Diego) - San Diego State earned its first victory of the season, defeating UC Davis 1-0 at a sun-splashed SDSU Sports Deck Sunday afternoon. The decision evened the Aztecs’ record at 1-1 and supplied head coach Mike Friesen with his program-record 123rd career win.
“It was great to get a home win and a shutout,” Friesen said. “A lot of good things happened today. We had a fantastic first weekend. I thought we played really well at UCLA on Friday, not quite as good today, but still enough quality to get the win. I like some of the things I have seen out of two of the attacking and defensive thirds and keeping the ball through the middle. I am really excited about the team and who we are becoming and getting the season rolling.”
The game-deciding sequence came in the 52nd minute when Rachel Speros sent a ball from midfield to the left corner where Mia Root was planted. From there, the freshman took a couple of touches and crossed it across the box where Aliyah Utush knocked in her second goal of the season from five yards out.
The remaining 38-plus minutes were identical to the first 45 as both teams were unable to find the back of the net. That, however, was where the similarities ended. In the first half, UC Davis (0-2) controlled the action despite being outshot by SDSU, 4-2. The final 45 minutes belonged to the Aztecs, who took seven shots in the second half while limiting the Aggies to just one.
Utush had a game-high four shots, which was one more than UC Davis had as a team. Three of her four attempts were on net, which was also one more than the Aggies had for the game. Speros, in addition to picking up her second career assist, was credited with three shots, including two on target. Root, meanwhile, took two shots and picked up her first career assist. Defensively, Gabby English made two saves.
For the game, San Diego State outshot UC Davis, 11-3, and enjoyed a 7-2 advantage in shots on goal. The Aggies, however, earned more corner kicks, 9-2.
As for Friesen, the 11th-year head coach entered the campaign tied with Chuck Clegg for the most wins in school history (122). Now with his 123rd victory under his belt, Friesen not only sits atop the SDSU coaching wins list, but he also took over sole possession of second place on the Mountain West career victories list. Friesen now enters next week’s set of games with a 123-65-27 record, which equates to a school-record .635 winning percentage.
“For me, it’s not that big of a deal in terms of the personal stuff,” Friesen said of the record. “What it has me do is reflect on my time at San Diego State and all the cool people I have gotten to work with and around. I have had a ton of great assistant coaches in Juan Pablo Favero, Nat Gonzalez and Joe Tedesco, and the list goes on, including our staff now. It’s just cool to look back and know that as a group, we have built this. Obviously, we have had a lot of quality players and I can think back to all the years of hard work those players put in, so it’s exciting to reflect on it and move forward.”
The Aztecs will continue their four-game homestand on Friday when Arizona State comes to Montezuma Mesa. Game time is scheduled for 7 p.m. PT and the contest will stream live on the Mountain West Network.