SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Senior defender Hjalti Kristjansson and sophomore midfielder Ricky Rodriguez recorded second-period goals to lead the Sacramento State men''s soccer team to a 3-1 win over Mountain Pacific Sports Federation-rival UNLV, Sunday afternoon at Hornet Soccer Field. The Hornets, who played in front of a season-high 785 fans, raised their record to 5-7-4 overall and 2-2-1 in the MPSF while the Rebels fell to 10-7, 3-2.
Sacramento State took its first lead early in the contest when junior midfielder Joel Rodriguez connected on a goal off an assist by junior forward David Fraser. Fraser beat a Rebel defender down the right endline and crossed a pass to J. Rodriguez in front of the goal for the finish. For J. Rodriguez, it was his second goal of the season.
UNLV answered back in the 13th minute when forward Kelly Frederick found the net off an assist by midfielder Rod Dyachenko. Dyachenko started the play by stripping the ball away from a Hornet defender near midfield and pushed the ball upfield. Dyachendko crossed a pass from the left side to Frederick in front of the Hornet goal to even the contest.
In the second period, Kristjansson gave the Hornets the lead for good in the 47th minute when he connected on a free kick, from 30 yards out, in the top right corner of the goal. For the Kopavogur, Iceland, native, it was his first goal of the 2002 season and the fourth free-kick goal of his career.
As the Rebels pressed to put pressure on the Hornet goal in the final minutes, Ricky Rodriguez beat UNLV goalkeeper Justin Dennis to a loose ball at midfield to record an open-net goal in the 90th minute and seal the game. For R. Rodriguez, it was the first goal of his Hornet career.
Freshman goalkeeper Matt McDougall earned the win with a game-high five saves. Dennis tallied three saves to lead the Rebels.
Sacramento State will complete its regular-season schedule at Hornet Soccer Field this week as the Hornets face Santa Clara, in a non-conference match, on Thursday, Nov. 7, at 2:30 p.m. The squad will compete in their final MPSF contest against San Jose State on Sunday, Nov. 10, at 1 p.m. Both teams have qualified for MPSF Tournament play on Nov. 14-17 in New Mexico but the match will have a major impact on the postseason seedings.