Redshirt defender freshman Joaquin Torres takes the ball up field in Cal Poly Men's Soccer 1-0 loss to UC Davis Credit: Brandon Bomberger

After losing to rival UC Santa Barbara last Saturday, the Mustangs losing streak extended to two after falling to UC Davis 1-0 on Wednesday, Sept 27 at 7 p.m. at Mustang Memorial Field to open up Big West play.

The Mustangs (2-5-1) and the Aggies (4-3-2) were locked in defensively from the start as neither team had a shot attempt until the 25-minute mark. UC Davis freshman midfielder Declan Horio attempted the first shot of the game and scored the only goal for both teams, giving the Aggies a 1-0 lead. 

Heading into halftime, the Mustangs had one shot attempt while the Aggies had a total of three shot attempts. The total possession percentage for both teams was also lopsided, as the Mustangs only accumulated 34% while the Aggies dominated with 66%.

Facing a one-goal deficit, the Mustangs were much more aggressive offensively in the second half.

The Mustangs attempted four shots total in the second half and appeared close to scoring on each of them. Freshman midfielder Ollie Hemlin, sophomore forward Sean McTeague, junior forward Jackson Kestler, and senior midfielder Tony Ruiz were responsible for the four shot attempts. Aggies goalkeeper Charles Janssen was able to save all four attempts.

By the end of the match, the Mustangs lost the possession total 66% to 34%. The team also ended the match by drawing two yellow cards.

First-year head coach Oige Kennedy felt the team’s slow start to the game was a major reason why the team lost.

“I felt like we lacked intensity in the first half”, Kennedy said. “We adjusted in the second half but we really have to start games the right way”.

With this loss being to a conference opponent, the Mustangs are sitting near the bottom of the Big West standings in ninth place.

The Mustangs have an opportunity to rebound from the loss as the team will hit the road to take on a winless UC Riverside team on Saturday, September 30 at 7 p.m. at UC Riverside Soccer Stadium in Riverside, California.