Mesa falls 2-0 to Saint Mary’s
In soccer it’s rare to get multiple scoring chances, and ultimately a game is decided by how a team uses its chances. That was the dilemma Sunday as Mesa State College’s men’s soccer team lost 2-0 to Saint Mary’s University at Walker Field.
“As a whole, (I’m) pretty disappointed,” Mesa State coach Josh Pittman said. “We struggled to create chances again, and when we had created chances, we struggled to put the ball on goal.”
The Mavericks finished the game with only 5 of their 12 shots on goal, many of them flying over the top or to the side of goal. In comparison, St. Mary’s had 7 shots, all of which were on goal.
Still, Mesa State was able to keep the game even through the first half. The first goal for the Rattlers came off of a corner kick in the 57th minute, which was scored as an own goal.
“We shot ourselves in the foot,” Pittman said. “We told everyone to be ready and we still fell asleep and gave up the goal.”
St. Mary’s secured the win with a breakaway goal in the 87th minute by Anthony Bustos, who started the game on the bench for the Rattlers.
“There were lucky breaks that started with bad mistakes,” Mesa State goalkeeper Josh Tinaglia said. “That seems like that’s what’s been happening this season, and I’m really disappointed.”
Tinaglia recorded five saves in the loss despite giving up two goals, although only one of those saves came in the second half.
St. Mary’s coach Que Willis was pretty happy with how his team played despite the humidity at the game.
“They (Mesa State) were a good team, so I can’t say it was a walk in the park or anything,” Willis said. “It took us a while to figure out what they were doing, and as the game went on, it seemed like we got a little bit better.”
Willis was also pleased with the fact his team was able to come back despite losing 5-0 on Friday to Fort Lewis.
“They fought through it and did what they needed to do to get the result,” Willis said.
Although Pittman agreed that St. Mary’s play improved throughout the game, he still held his team responsible for the loss.
“We were making poor decisions,” Pittman said. “If you make poor decisions, you’re going to lose.”
The Mavericks’ struggles weren’t helped by the injuries that also nagged the team Thursday in their season opener.
The team was still missing returning starters Andy Cornia and Jake Jobe. Danny Westcott played in place of Reese Kegans, who was hurt in Thursday’s tie with Adams State.
The Mavericks return home for Saturday’s game against Dixie State.