(MSU Billings release)
SAN BERNARDINO, Cal. – A comeback effort by the Montana State University Billings men’s soccer team saw the score reach 2-1 on Sunday at Premier Field, but host Cal State University San Bernardino put its foot on the gas and scored twice more to hand the Yellowjackets a 4-1 defeat.
The Coyotes (1-1) scored twice in each half, with Jesus Ortega and Francisco Sierra finding the net in the first and Jair Magallan adding a pair of goals in the second.
Dana Kowachek scored his first goal of the season for MSUB, which falls to 0-2 with the loss.
“We were lacking today,” said MSUB head coach Alex Balog. “We didn’t connect passes and some individual errors led to the goals we conceded. We had some of the best chances in the first half, but San Bernardino played very well and they were clinical in the attacking third.”
Ortega put CSUSB on the scoreboard in the 28th minute, receiving a through ball from Jonathan Garcia and punched a shot into the corner of the net. A free kick near the box cost the ‘Jackets another goal, as Sierra found the left corner of the net under MSUB goalkeeper Ludvig Rhodin.
Facing a 2-0 deficit at halftime, the ‘Jackets came out of the break on the hunt and were the next to score. Sophomore Guillaume Marneau delivered an excellent cross into the box and Kowachek was there to pull his team within a goal in the 77th minute.
MSUB took a gamble after that, shifting to an aggressive attacking formation in search of a late equalizer. It came to no avail however, as CSUSB took advantage of positioning and twice scored in counter attack situations. Danny Ortiz required a terrific save by Rhodin in the 86th minute, but Magallan was there to finish the rebound into the net.
Just three minutes later, Magallan added a finishing touch as he took a pass from Ika Khivivashivilli and beat Rhodin in a one-on-one to make it 4-1.
Overall the Coyotes out-shot the ‘Jackets 11-6, and placed eight of their attempts on target. Ortiz led all players with four shots, including a pair on target.
Rhodin made four saves for the Yellowjackets, while Jacob Huber had a pair of stops to earn the win for the home team.
Perhaps the best unconverted scoring chance of the day for MSUB came early on, when a shot by Shantik Bedrosian from inside the box missed wide of the target in the eighth minute.
Luca Battistotti was the lone field player to play all 90 minutes, while Ricardo Palomino played 80 and had one attempt on target.
THE BUZZ: Freshman Bryan Maxwell was selected as the St. Vincent Healthcare Player of the Game, coming off the bench and contributing 45 solid minutes on the back line…MSUB is now 0-3 all-time against CSUSB…the Coyotes have out-scored the ‘Jackets 13-2 in their three wins over the last three seasons…the goal was the second in Kowachek’s MSUB career.
NEXT UP: MSUB’s trip to California concludes on Tuesday, with a 10 a.m. Pacific time kickoff against Cal State San Marcos.