Lions Drop Grudge Match, 1-0 at Sacramento State
LMU loses second straight after three-match winning streak
Sept. 17, 2010
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Sacramento State's Max Alvarez scored the game's only goal with 20 minutes remaining to deny LMU its chance at revenge against the Hornets as the teams met for the first time since the 2009 NCAA Tournament on Friday at Hornet Field in Sacramento. The Lions (3-2-0) have now lost two in a row after starting the season on a three-match winning streak, while the Hornets (3-2-0) win their third in a row.
Nearly 10 months to the day after Sacramento State ended LMU's 2009 season in the NCAA Tournament in overtime at Sullivan Field, the two sides went at it again in a different location but with the same outcome. When the teams met in 2009, LMU held a decided 22-12 advantage in shots but this time the Hornets would reverse the stats as they held LMU to just nine shots, to Sac State's 16.
As to be expected from a rivarly that is heating up, neither side backed down, resulting in nine yellow cards between the sides. But the contest was not devoid of offense, either. The Lions would get the first look of the contest when senior Rafael Baca fired high after two minutes. That would be LMU's only shot for the next half hour, however, as Sac State took control and forced junior Jack McCormack into four first-half saves.
Alvarez fired home from 20 yards out in the 70th minute for the deciding goal. Following a corner kick, McCormack saved from Chris Bettencourt but the ball came out to Alvarez, whose shot eluded the defense for his first goal of the year.
Twenty minutes was still enough for time for the Lions to put pressure on the Hornets. Their best chance came in the 76th minute when sophomore David Ponce beat Hornet goalie Federico Antonelli, only to see his shot denied by the post. In the final seconds, junior Roger Downes launched one last attempt but it went wide and the Hornets were able to run out the clock.
McCormack stopped a season-high six shots for the Lions. Antonelli was forced into just one save in holding LMU scoreless for the first time in its last 11 matches.
LMU remains in Northern California to take on San Jose State on Sunday at 1 p.m.