SAN JOSE, Calif. – Junior Chimdum Mez buried a shot from just inside the 18-yard box in the third minute of the second overtime to lead Sacramento State to a 1-0 season opening win at San Jose State Friday night.
"It's my first game winner and its one of the best feelings I've ever felt," Mez said. "I got around the guy and hit it one-time to the back post and I was like 'wow!'. I hit a great shot and I hope it's the first of many."
The winning goal came after the Hornets saved a ball along the far sideline and played it back into the middle of the field atop the 18-yard box. Freshman Ivan Ramirez corralled a high ball and fed a lob to Mez, who took one dribble and fired a shot into the right side of the San Jose State goal to give Sacramento State the victory.
"It's a great win to start off the season," Mez said. "San Jose is a tough place to play and it's very enclosed. It's a great atmosphere and just a great way for us to start the season on the road."
The goal by Mez ended a night that didn't see many quality scoring opportunities for either team. The early action was cautions against the home team as the Spartans were issued two yellow cards in the first eight minutes.
San Jose State had the first good scoring chance as sophomore Kyler McLaughlin had a clean look at a mostly open Hornet net but hit the crossbar in the 20th minute. The Hornets managed just three shots in the opening 45 minutes, placing one on goal, while the Spartans had seven in a scoreless first period.
Hornet sophomore Edwin Luna nearly put the visitors on the board with the second half kickoff, forcing Spartan goalkeeper Felix Petermann to make a jumping save to push the ball over the crossbar. Sophomore Brad Kellogg had a nice run on goal in the 59th minute but was denied from 10 yards out.
San Jose State had its first good look in the second half in the 72nd minute as a give-and-go got junior Frankie Beauchamp open in front of the Hornet goal but his one-time attempt sailed high. San Jose State would not put a single try on goal for the duration of the second period, but Petterman made four saves in the half for SJSU to force overtime in a scoreless tie.
In the first overtime each team could muster just a single shot, and though both tries were on frame they presented minimal challenges to the respective keepers to send the match to a second overtime where Mez would net the winner.
The match was extremely physical and at some times very chippy, as San Jose State was issued seven yellow cards for the contest and Sacramento State had two. Hornet senior goalkeeper Cesar Castillo made three saves for his 11th career shutout, moving him into sole possession of third place in program history. The shots ended even at 13-13 while Sacramento State had a 7-3 edge in shots in goal.
Sacramento State will return home for its next three contests including its home opener next Friday, Sept. 6, against CSU Bakersfield at 5 p.m. after the Hornet women's soccer team plays at 2:30.