LA JOLLA, Calif. - The UC San Diego men’s soccer team got a pair of headers from upperclassmen Tsuk Haroush and Jacob Valadez around a Point Loma Nazarene University own goal to produce a resounding 3-0 victory over its non-conference crosstown rival in its 2013 home opener Saturday at Triton Soccer Stadium.
In the 12th minute, Haroush, a fourth-year senior, powered a free header perfectly into the near-side netting after junior transfer Brandon Bauman ran onto an Alec Arsht pass into the left corner and first-timed a pinpoint cross toward the penalty spot.
Though the Tritons created numerous other chances to add to that advantage throughout a well-played first half by the home side, they settled for the one-goal edge heading into the interval.
Following the break, UCSD gained a bit of fortune in the 61st minute as senior Cory Wolfrom’s left-sided cross was contacted at the far post by a PLNU defender, with a teammate, Matt Steinhaus, unable to get out of the way as the ball trickled into the corner for an own goal and a 2-0 Triton lead.
Within nine minutes, the result was put out of doubt when Elan Gefen played a ball back to Bauman, who in turn sent a cross from the right that again found its way toward the penalty spot, where this time it was a third junior, Valadez, who buried the header.
Bauman was credited with an incredible 22 assists as a sophomore at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa a season ago, and opened his UCSD account with the pair of helpers Saturday. Valadez’s goal was the second of his career.
Josh Cohen needed to make just a single save in the Triton net in notching his first shutout of the 2013 season and 13th of his career. Carter Phillips stopped five shots for the visitors.
UCSD maintained an 18-7 advantage in the shots category.
UCSD now embarks on a season-long four-match road stretch to begin the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) portion of its 2013 schedule. The run kicks off at league favorite Cal State Dominguez Hills on Friday night, Sept. 13, at 7 p.m.
Triton Notes: UCSD is now 19-4-1 against PLNU all-time ... The teams were meeting for the first time since the 1999 season ... UCSD is off to a 2-0 start for the first time since 2009 ... The opener by Haroush was his fourth career goal and second of the game-winning variety ... Arsht and Gefen’s assists were the fourth and second of their respective careers ... Padraig Buckley and Nick Roberts joined Valadez in making their season debuts ... Junior A.J. Beloff and freshmen Riley Harbour and Nick Palano all appeared for the first time in Triton colors late in the match ... Junior forward Alessandro Canale sat out the match while serving his one-game suspension for receiving a red card at California Baptist on Thursday.