Aug. 25, 2006
Stanford, Calif. - The 18th ranked Santa Clara men's soccer team (1-0-0) opened its season with an impressive 1-0 win on the road against the Stanford Cardinal (0-1-0). Peter Lowry scored the game's lone goal on a penalty kick early in the second half and the Broncos experienced defense clamped down on the Cardinal to earn the shutout. SCU has now beaten Stanford three straight times and is unbeaten in their past four matches against them.
Despite some early nerves with some new faces in the line-up, the Broncos started the match strong, keeping the Cardinal off balance and limiting their possession. They also created a number of opportunities, but could not convert in the final third.
One of the team's best chances in the first half came off the foot of sophomore transfer Brian Martin at the 25 minute mark. Freshman Amaechi Igwe set the play up with some nifty work in midfield before sending a perfectly weighted ball into the box. The ball came down to Martin 15 yards from goal, but his left-footed volley sailed high keeping the match scoreless.
Besides Igwe, four other freshmen got their first taste of college soccer in the first half with Stephen McCarthy starting and playing well in the midfield. Sean Danzeiser and Jeff Cosgriff also saw time with Cosgriff receiving a strong ovation from some hometown fans. Cosgriff is from nearby San Bruno and played his high school soccer at St. Ignatius.
Just before halftime, two of those freshmen nearly connected for the game's first goal. Captain Peter Lowry started the play with a great ball down the left wing to Igwe, who faked to his left before slotting a pass across to McCarthy. McCarthy side-footed a low shot to the near post, but it was just off target.
At halftime, the Broncos had dominated possession and held the Cardinal to just two shots one of which found the frame. Bronco goalkeeper Joseph Buttita was steady in his first game, coming off his line to punch some balls clear and making the one save to preserve the clean sheet.
Coming out of halftime, head coach Cameron Rast inserted freshmen forward Ryan Brown and he made an immediate impact. After saving an errant pass on the sideline he battled through two tackles to break free on the left wing. The Montclair, NJ native then knocked a pass into the box for Martin, who turned his defender and broke to goal. Just as Martin attempted to shoot, he was brought down and referee Yader Reyes pointed to the spot.
Lowry calmly stepped up and slotted home the penalty kick past a diving Brent Stewart in the 49th minute to give the Broncos the only goal they would need.
With the SCU backline of Jamil Roberts, Matt Marquess, Brian Curry and Matt Hatzke playing well, the Cardinal could not find any gaps in the Bronco defense and Rast's squad earned their first shutout of the season.
Next up for the Broncos is California, who comes to Buck Shaw Stadium on Sunday, Aug. 27 for a 7:00 p.m. PT game.