Oct. 18, 2003
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Erik Ustruck scored a short-handed second-half goal to lead the eighth-ranked Santa Clara University men's soccer team to a 2-1 victory over Gonzaga in West Coast Conference action Saturday night at Buck Shaw Stadium. The Broncos improve to 10-2-3 overall and 2-0-0 in league play while dropping the Bulldogs to 5-6-1 overall and 0-2-0 in WCC action.
Santa Clara scored first in the 12th minute when Will Weatherly dribbled the ball to the top right corner of the box and centered the ball to Igwe. Igwe completed the give-and-go after Weaterly cut behind Igwe to the left and blasted a shot for his fifth goal of the season.
Gonzaga tied the game just five minutes later when Scott Yuska fed Scott Bertram, who found Arni Pjeturrson open on the right site. Pjeturrson's shot into the top left corner beat SCU keeper Steve Cronin and knotted the score at one apiece.
The first half was physical as 19 fouls and four cards issued in the period, including a red card that was assessed to Santa Clara captain Audren Cashman in the 33rd minute following a midfield tackle. The Broncos were also forced to play without the services of Hermann Award finalist and top defender Ryan Cochrane, who was kicked in the ankle and left the match in the 24th minute.
Santa Clara battled through the adversity and scored the go-ahead goal in the 64th minute as Jason Cunliffe sent a ball through the middle from the left side. Ryan Wolfe, who looked to be the primary recipient of the pass, let the ball slip past him on to Ustruck, who was streaking down the right side. His attempt beat Zags' keeper Kris Wright high for his second goal of the season.
Santa Clara outshot the Bulldogs 13-6, and Cronin picked up his 10th win of the season while notching two saves on the night. Gonzaga netminder Kris Wright made seven saves in the match, keeping the Zags close.
SCU remains at home for a key WCC matchup next Saturday in Buck Shaw Stadium, as the Broncos host Portland at 7 p.m. The Pilots, like Santa Clara, are currently 2-0-0 in WCC play, making the winner of the match on October 25 one of the frontrunners for the league title.