No. 20 UR Men's Soccer Blanks Pomona-Pitzer to Move onto the SCIAC Postseason Tournament Final

Photo credit: Mollie Craighead
Photo credit: Mollie Craighead

The top-seeded University of Redlands men's soccer team hosted fourth-seeded Pomona-Pitzer Colleges in Wednesday's semifinal of the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Postseason Tournament on Farquhar Field. In a total-team effort, the Maroon and Gray orchestrated an amazing second half that included three goals in an 11-minute span to move onto the conference tournament championship.

Senior forward Chase Boone (Beaverton, OR) and senior defender Ben Thompson (Spokane, WA) got things rolling for the Bulldogs by taking shots early on, but the Sagehen defenders stepped up to block them.

Less than 12 minutes into the game, Pomona-Pitzer's Aidan Ferrer worked to take advantage of a Redlands miscue by blasting a shot from about 20 yards out but it was high off the mark.

In the 28th minute, senior midfielder Sergio Valencia (San Jose, CA) rocketed one towards goal, but Pomona-Pitzer's goalkeeper Ben Mitchell made the quick save. Soon after, the Sagehens' Ethan Flor tested senior goalkeeper Josh Haskill (Lakewood, CA) with a shot, but Haskill stepped up to the challenge to keep Pomona-Pitzer off the board.

Both senior forward Cameron Doody (Arvada, CO) and freshman forward Collin ChubbFertal (Eugene, OR) had quality looks towards the frame, but the game remained scoreless through the end of the first half.

After a motivational halftime speech by Head Coach Ralph Perez, the home team immediately got off to a hot start, as junior forward Kayvon Parsa (West Hills, CA) ripped a free kick that skimmed off of a defender in the wall before hitting the crossbar just minutes into the second stanza. Shortly after, senior midfielder Anthony Royer (La Crescenta, CA) connected on a beautiful bicycle kick that went just wide.

With Redlands remaining persistent in the offensive third, it was only a matter of time for the Maroon and Gray to find the break-through.  In the 56th minute, Boone took the ball up the far side, juked some defenders, and found the far corner of the net to put the Bulldogs up, 1-0.

Eleven minutes later, Boone possessed the ball near the far post with his back towards the goal.  He sent it across the mouth of the goal with a kick of his heel before sophomore forward Antony Chonga (San Diego, CA) tapped it into the far corner for the 2-0 Redlands advantage.

Just 40 seconds after that score, Doody quickly worked the ball into Redlands' attacking third, where he fed a nice pass to Collin ChubbFertal, who settled it before swiftly firing the ball past the diving Sagehen keeper for the third and final goal of the night.

With 15 minutes left in regulation, the Bulldogs started to send in rookie feet for postseason experience on Farquhar Field.  Also, junior midfielder Jesus Avalos (Indio, CA) and junior defender Spencer Scott (Portland, OR) both got off nice corner kicks in their time on the field. 

Redlands' defensive unit of Thompson, junior Joey Kenney (Portland, OR), and sophomores Matias Lazo-Fanning (Seattle, WA) and Dylan Carlyle (San Jose, CA) provided great pressure and presence along the backline, as Haskill only had to make one save on the night.

With this win, the Bulldogs (14-3-2, 12-0-2 SCIAC) host second-seeded Cal Lutheran University on Saturday, November 4, at a time still to be determined.