Cal Poly Men’s Soccer shut out CSUN 2-0 behind a six-save performance from sophomore goalkeeper Carlos Arce-Hurtado on Sunday, Oct. 20 inside Alex G. Spanos Stadium. Graduate midfielder Colin Hyatt and junior midfielder Emmanuel Perez scored for the Mustangs en route to their second conference win of the season.
The Mustangs (6-6-1, 2-2 Big West) jumped to an early lead in the third minute of the match as Hyatt found the back of the net for the first time in his Cal Poly career. Hyatt’s header was initiated by a Freeman Dwamena corner kick before fellow junior defender Andrew Forth flicked the ball to the far post to find Hyatt.
“We talk a lot about bringing energy to the beginning of the game,” head coach Steve Sampson said. “We call it playing on our front foot, which forces the opponent to play on their heels.”
Arce-Hurtado’s four saves in the first half helped contain the Matadors’ (6-7-1, 1-3 Big West), who were unsuccessful in their seven shot attempts.
“Having an early goal was very helpful for our defense,” Arce-Hurtado said. “After the first goal, it was all defense and we knew it was our job to win this game.”
Just five minutes after the start of the second half, Perez scored his ninth goal of the season off an assist from senior forward Diego Alonso. The goal moved Perez into the top goal-scorer position in the Big West Conference while Alonso earned his team-leading fourth assist of the year.
The defensive clinic from Cal Poly continued after Perez’ goal as the team shut out the Matadors for the remainder of the match.
Arce-Hurtado’s six saves brought his season total to 32. Sampson praised the goalkeeper for his third shutout of the year.
“[Arce-Hurtado] continues to make big saves in big moments while playing with an enormous amount of confidence,” Sampson said. “I really consider him to be one of the top goalkeepers in the entire conference.”
After two straight conference wins, the Mustangs are confident in their team’s current state and are looking forward to the games ahead. Sampson acknowledged the remaining conference matchups on the schedule and said he feels the Mustangs can “beat anyone in the conference.”
“We are looking for playoffs,” Arce-Hurtado said. “That’s the end goal for all of us.”
Cal Poly will travel north to Hornet Field to take on Sacramento State on Wednesday, October 23rd at 3:00 PM.