Credit: Kayla Stuart | Mustang News, 2022

Cal Poly men’s soccer is still looking for their first win of the season following a 4-0 loss to San Diego on Saturday, Sept. 24 inside Alex G. Spanos Stadium. 

The Mustangs (0-8-0) couldn’t find the back of the net for the sixth time this season, while the Toreros (2-3-5) scored early and often to earn their second win of the season.

In the 11th minute, San Diego earned a penalty kick after Cal Poly sophomore goalkeeper Gabe Penner took down a striker inside the box. Torero midfielder Mason Tunbridge buried the penalty to put San Diego ahead 1-0.

Three minutes later, Tunbridge pinballed a shot off the post for his second goal of the night, extending the Torero lead to 2-0.

“Losing in the last 12 seconds against Santa Barbara [on Wednesday] was absolutely deflating for us and I think that showed in the first 15 to 20 minutes of this game,” head coach Steve Sampson said. 

Following the offensive surge from San Diego, the Mustangs settled back into the game and began getting shots off, highlighted by sophomore midfielder Andrew McGee launching a shot off the post in the 19th minute.

Despite outshooting the Toreros in the first half (6-3), the Mustangs trailed at the half, 2-0.

“We’re starting to have more offensive threats and now it’s just time to execute and put them away,” sophomore captain Nate Colley said. “To see that is promising.”

After a promising end to the first half, the air was taken out of Alex G. Spanos Stadium after Tunbridge scored once again in the 62nd minute to complete the hat trick. San Diego followed with another goal in the 64th minute to take a commanding 4-0 lead.

Mustang freshman midfielder Richie Garcia and sophomore forward Rory Folan each launched shots on goal in the 73rd and 77th minutes trying to get the Mustangs back into the game. With Garcia and Folan failing to find the back of the net, Cal Poly fell 4-0.

The Toreros put six shots on goal on 12 attempts, while the Mustangs managed just two shots on goal on 11 shots.

“For us, the first half of the season is over and that’s in the books now,” Sampson said. “The second half of the season is what counts and we want to be one of the six to make the playoffs and make a run at the end of the season.”

Cal Poly will look to flip the switch during Big West play when they travel to take on UC Davis on Wednesday, Sept. 28 at UC Davis Health Stadium.