Nov. 16, 2007
SPOKANE, Wash. - The No. 3 Santa Clara men's soccer team's unbeaten streak reached 16 games Friday afternoon with a 1-0 overtime victory against Gonzaga at Martin Field. Chris Sauter scored the overtime winner on a header with under a minute left in the game. Santa Clara is now 14-1-4 on the season and 9-0-2 in West Coast Conference play.
The winning goal came after a corner kick from Peter Lowry. The Gonzaga defense cleared the ball out, but it was sent back into the box by Stephen McCarthy. Sauter got free of his defender and headed the ball over the line. The ball just slipped across the goal line as a host of Bulldogs defenders attempted to clear the ball away. The goal was just the second of Sauter's career and the second overtime winner for the Huntington Beach native. He also scored in overtime to beat San Diego in 2006.
Bronco goalkeeper Kevin Klasila had another strong match and earned his seventh shutout of the year, while pushing his record to 10-0-3 on the season. He made two big saves early in the match to keep SCU in the match. Five minutes in, he came off his line to stop Tye Perdido from close range. Then with under 15 minutes to go in the first half Klasila stopped a point-blank shot from Gonzaga's George Josten to keep the game scoreless.
Santa Clara had two chances late in the game, but the Broncos were denied by the Gonzaga defense. Bulldogs goalkeeper Vito Higgins made a diving save of a Kellen Wantulok shot with 11 minutes left. In the final seconds of the game, junior Brian Martin had his attempt at the game-winner cleared off the line.
In the second overtime, the Broncos continued to push forward looking for the winner, but Higgins was up to the task. He stopped Lowry and Wantulok, but Sauter eventually got the goal that the Broncos needed.
With the win, Santa Clara is still alive for a bye in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The seedings for the tournament will be announced on Monday, Nov. 19 at 2:30 p.m. PT on ESPNews.
The Broncos finish the regular season on Sunday, Nov. 18 on the road against the Portland Pilots. The game kicks off at 3 p.m. PT at Merlo Field in Portland.