Blue Collar Effort Leads Men's Soccer Past UC Riverside
Aug. 27, 2006
CORVALLIS, Ore. - Michigan State men's soccer collected its second overtime victory in as many days with a 2-1 win over UC Riverside at the Oregon State/Diadora Classic in Corvallis, Ore., Saturday night. Louis Stephens III scored the game-winning goal with just 46 seconds left in the second overtime lifting MSU over the Highlanders. The Spartans open the season with a 2-0 record after having beaten Sacramento State in one overtime period Friday night.
"These are good teams out here on the west coast," MSU head coach Joe Baum stated after the game. "We have come to the west coast many times, but this is the first time we have been able to win both games."
Stephens clinched the win for Michigan State with less than a minute remaining when he accepted a pass from Doug DeMartin and beat UCR's goalie in a one-on-one confrontation. DeMartin chipped the ball toward the box and Stephens won the race to the ball, finding the inside left post for the victory.
"This was a great team effort, really a blue collar win by our guys," Baum added. "With yesterday's match going into overtime, and then again today, it showed a lot of character and toughness from our team."
Michigan State struck first in the game when Kenzo Webster scored in the 54th minute, off a feed from Zac Scaffidi, narrowly avoiding an offside trap. The Highlanders evened the score in the 68th minute on a Brandon Plummer goal.
"The temperature out here today was in the 90s and in Michigan we had been training in the 80s," Baum stated. "Our team, especially our defense deserves a lot of credit for this win."
Green and White goalie Jason Tillman posted two saves, while the Spartan defense cleared one off the line. Offensively, MSU out-shot UC Riverside 16-8. On the weekend, the Spartans out-shot their opponents 34-12.
Michigan State returns to action next weekend, as it hosts the MSU/Radisson Fall Classic. The Spartans welcome Illinois State, New Mexico and Michigan to East Lansing, facing New Mexico at 5 PM on Sept. 1 and Northern Illinois on Sept. 3 at 2:30 PM. MSU and Michigan will not meet until Big Ten play.
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