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UCLA Men's Soccer: Bruins in Berkeley to Battle the Bears
UCLA is seeking to break a five-game winless streak, while UC Berkeley will try to build upon its first win of the season last Saturday.
The UCLA men’s soccer team (1-4-1, 0-3-1 Pac-12) is in the Bay Area this afternoon to square off against the UC Berkeley Golden Bears, a battle between two teams in the bottom half of the Pac-12 table. The Bruins will try to break a five game winless streak when the two squads kickoff at 1 pm PT. The Golden Bears are coming off their first win of the season, a 3-2 victory on the road over San Diego State.
Last Time Out
Last Sunday, UCLA was outclassed by Washington at Wallis Annenberg Stadium, as the Huskies scored in the 31st minute and put the cherry on top in 88th minute, quashing any chance of UCLA equalizing in the final seconds. 2-0 would be the final score.
Against Washington, the Bruins actually outshot the Huskies, 9-8, with each team putting four shots on frame. The difference was that Husky ‘keeper Sam Fowler made four saves and earned the clean sheet, while UCLA goalkeeper Justin Garces made two saves, and allowed the two goals.
UCLA didn’t put a shot on frame until the 63rd minute, and pushed for the tying goal with three shots on frame in the final 15 minutes, but UCLA pressing forward gave UW the opportunity to extend the lead to 2-0, and they did.
The Bruins have now been shut out in consecutive games, albeit against top 10 teams, and have only scored two goals in the last five games, resulting in four loses and a 1-1 tie at home to SDSU.
UC Berkeley Golden Bears
UC Berkeley has only played four games this season, all of them within the Pac-12 Conference. Like UCLA, the Golden Bears have fallen to Stanford, Washington, and Oregon State. Unlike UCLA, which tied SDSU, UC Berkeley prevailed over the Aztecs in San Diego last Sunday.
That win put the Golden Bears into 4th place in the Pac-12, with UCLA right behind them in fourth.
UC Berkeley has scored four goals in its four games, while conceding eleven. Four different players have gotten on the scoresheet for the Golden Bears, so the Bruin defense cannot really try to shut down one player.
Redshirt freshman Collin Travasos has played 270 minutes in goal for UC Berkeley on the season, with redshirt junior Chris Gustini, playing the other 90. The two each played a half in the Stanford and Washington contests, while Travasos played the entire matches versus San Diego State and Oregon State. Neither player has a clean sheet. It is a toss-up as to who will start today for the Golden Bears.
I keep predicting UCLA to turn heads and get some sort of a result, but the Bruins have not done so. Today, despite the fact that they are playing a team that is pretty close in record to the Bruins, I do not think UCLA will get the job done. Hopefully it is “reverse mojo” and the Bruins break out of their slump, but I am predicting a 1-0 loss in Berkeley.
UCLA Men’s Soccer (1-4-1)
Opponent: UC Berkeley (1-3-0)
Game Time: 1:00 pm PT, Saturday, March 20, 2021
Where: Witter Rugby Field, Berkeley, CA
Live TV/Audio: None
Live Stream: Pac-12.com and the Pac-12 Now app
Live Stats: UCLA StatBroadcast
This is your UCLA men’s soccer versus UC Berkeley Golden Bears game thread.