September 24, 2010

Offensive Changes Propel Santa Clara Past San Jose State 2-1

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara University adjusted its offensive approach, pressuring city rival San Jose State University all night, en route to a 2-1 victory Friday at Buck Shaw Stadium.

All-league midfielder Brandon Zimmerman played more of a role in the attack, playing alongside freshman forward Carlos Montes, which generated consistent opportunities throughout for Santa Clara (3-4) – a team which snapped a two-game losing streak.

"We changed some things this week," said Santa Clara head coach Cameron Rast, three-time West Coast Conference Coach of the Year. "We looked at the qualities we have within our group and needed some adjustments after the first six games."

In a first half which saw SCU outshoot SJSU 6-1, Mykell Bates put the Broncos up by snapping a header inside the far post on a corner kick offering by Zimmerman. Bates' goal – his first of the year – came in the 19th minute.

Harrison Hanley, who took full advantage of his time as a reserve, collected a loose ball inside the box, sent by Danny Maeda, and fired home a shot from close range just before halftime and the Broncos led 2-0.

SCU controlled the tempo until San Jose State (5-3) responded by getting a goal back in the waning moments on a nice individual effort by Nick Cashmere.

"The team we don't want to end up being is a pretty, possession-oriented team that everybody thinks plays great soccer, but then asks 'what's your record' and it's not a good record," said Rast. "We want to be a team that is effective. You score goals in the attacking end at that's where the ball needs to be for us."

Rast improved his home record at Buck Shaw Stadium to 50-13-16 during his nine seasons as head coach. Historically the games between SCU and SJSU have been extremely competitive, with the Broncos now holding a 22-19-4 all-time edge.

The Broncos will travel to Sacramento to take on a surging Sacramento State University team Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. The Hornets are coming off their best season in school history, advancing into the NCAA Tournament Second Round and is off to a 5-2 start this year.

Photo: Santa Clara's Mykell Bates scores in the first half; photo by Denis Concordel