Nov 10, 2013 2:35 AM by Chris Giovannettic

Gauchos beat Mustangs in Blue-Green Rivalry

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - UC Santa Barbara senior forward Goffin Boyoko notched the eventual game-winning goal in the 61st minute and sophomore forward Charlie Miller finalized the scoreline with an 86th-minute strike as the Cal Poly men's soccer program closed its 2013 regular season schedule with a 2-0 defeat at No. 12 and Blue-Green rival UC Santa Barbara on Saturday evening inside Harder Stadium.

Sophomore goalkeeper Wade Hamilton chalked up six saves for Cal Poly (10-8-2, 3-5-2), which was limited to one shot on goal for the opening 89 minutes. Just the second match between Cal Poly and UC Santa Barbara to be decided by more than a single goal in the past 14 matchups, the contest played out in front of 12,805 fans - the eighth-largest regular season attendance figure in NCAA history.

Tied for second place in the Big West Conference North Division standings with UC Davis (8-8-3, 4-4-2) entering play Saturday, the Mustangs found themselves momentarily relegated to third after the Aggies topped Sacramento State in earlier action, 1-0.

With UC Davis owning the tiebreaker should the two teams finish level on points, Cal Poly's fate as the No. 3 seed from the Big West North Division was already cemented once action kicked off in Santa Barbara. The Mustangs will open their fifth Big West Tournament in six years on Tuesday, Nov. 12 at No. 20 Cal State Northridge (13-5-1, 5-4-1), which finished second in the Big West South. The winner advances to face UC Santa Barbara in a semifinal matchup on Friday, Nov. 15. The Gauchos (12-4-3, 7-0-3), as north division champions, earned a first-round Big West Tournament bye.

The Big West Tournament championship is scheduled for Sunday, Nov. 17 with the winner receiving automatic entry into the NCAA Tournament.

Cal Poly's best chance to break through against UC Santa Barbara came in the sixth and seventh minutes, as senior forward Mackenzie Pridham hit the left post and freshman winger Ari Lassiter forced Gaucho freshman goalkeeper Josh McNeely into one of his two saves.

The Mustangs mustered just three more shots the entire half while UC Santa Barbara was able to switch the run of play midway through the first and force six corner kick attempts. Under pressure, Hamilton posted three first-half saves.

Into the second half, UC Santa Barbara continued its test of the Mustang defense with freshman forward Ismaila Jome forcing a 50th-minute save from Hamilton. The Gauchos produced four further shot attempts in the next nine minutes before Boyoko registered his winner by heading a corner from freshman midfielder Drew Murphy inside the right post.

Hamilton thwarted two more Gaucho attacks before UC Santa Barbara rounded off the scoreline on 86 minutes as junior defender Kevin Garcia-Lopez lobbed a pass to Boyoko, who passed to Miller for the goal.



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