Scoring troubles frustrate Mavericks
Mesa State College goalkeeper Josh Tinaglia made 13 saves, including a penalty kick, but it wasn’t enough.
The Metro State College men’s soccer team snuck a couple goals past him Sunday to defeat the Mavericks 2-0 at Walker Field.
Mesa State (2-13-2, 2-9-1 RMAC) was shut out for the 10th time this season and lost for the sixth time in its past seven games.
“This has been the story of our season,” Mesa coach Josh Pittman said. “We haven’t got one goal created out of nothing that every team seems to get against us. We slip up and don’t mark up properly in the box and give up easy goals. It’s frustrating.”
The 25th-ranked Roadrunners (10-5-2, 7-3-2 RMAC) took 21 shots, including 15 on goal. Tinaglia challenged all of them.
“Josh is very good,” Metro coach Ken Parsons said. “I even told my team before the game started it’s senior day, so I would expect Josh would have a little more motivation here today. He’s going to come up with a big save or two, so we need to make sure we create as many opportunities as we can and finish what we can because Josh will come up with some good saves.”
Mesa was limited to seven shots, but six were on goal, including the Mavericks’ best opportunity to score with 15 minutes left in the second half.
Junior midfielder Ryan McClanahan had a one-on-one chance, but Metro goalkeeper Dominique Griffith beat him to the ball. The Mavs immediately stole Griffith’s pass and McClanahan had another chance, but Griffith was able to pull the ball into his chest before it snuck past him.
“We’re not creating enough chances,” Pittman said. “When you don’t, the likelihood of scoring becomes less and less. That’s where we’re at right now.”
Metro State didn’t waste time attackick the goal, scoring nine minutes and 20 seconds into the game when Mike Martinez’ shot grazed off the crossbar and bounced inside the goal line. It was assisted by Scott Grode.
“It was a great build up,” Parsons said. “It was a sequence of five passes, we finally worked in a cross against them. It was a good finish by Mike. It cross the line after the rebound off the post. That was a great sequence with a lot of quick combinations, a good cross and good finish.”
The Roadrunners held on to the one-goal lead until the 81st minute when Jamey King scored on a loose ball off a corner kick. King picked up the deflection off Grode’s header attempt.
Mesa State snapped out of its three-game scoring slump with a scoring onslaught, defeating Nebraska-Kearney 5-0 in Kearney, Neb.
The Mavericks (9-9-0, 6-8-0 RMAC) moved back into fifth place in the RMAC standings with two games left. The top six teams qualify for the RMAC Tournament.
“We figured out how to find the back of the net,” Mesa coach Erin Sharpe said. “Now, we can work towards our goal of getting in the conference tournament.”
Mesa scored all five goals in the first half and the goals came from five different players from all three lines.
Forward Dany Ramirez ended the scoring drought, defender Kelci Crispe made it 2-0, then midfielders Natali Koen, Jami Simpson and Brittany Cito scored just before halftime.
The Mavericks took 22 shots, including 12 on goal. Kearney (1-16-1, 0-13-1 RMAC), a first-year program, had four shots, one on goal.