San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

Men’s soccer finishes Pac-12 play with a 3-0 loss against UCLA

It was the last home game for five Aztecs, as they concluded their time at SDSU
Mariadelcarmen Zuniga
San Diego State midfielder Alexander Levengood possesses the ball against UCLA defender Pietro Grassi on Friday, Nov. 10 at the SDSU Sports Deck. The Aztecs dropped a 3-0 decision to the Bruins.

San Diego State men’s soccer hosted UCLA on Friday, Nov. 10 for their last match in the Pac-12 Conference, losing 3-0 at the SDSU Sports Deck.

Besides the loss against the Bruins, SDSU celebrated senior night. They celebrated five of their seniors who will be parting ways with the program.

The five seniors were midfielders Alexander Levengood, Seth Clark, captain Henry Smith-Hastie, forward Owen Zaldivar and defender Reid Sproat. Before the game, the team celebrated each player by giving them framed jerseys surrounded by friends and family.

“(The seniors) brought a ton of maturity to the group,” Hopkins said. “A big part of our program is preparing them for life after college.”

An early goal by the Bruins (9-3-5, 6-0-4 Pac-12 Conference) in the seventh minute by midfielder Tucker Lepley, assisted by forward Andre Ochoa, who put the Aztecs (6-7-5, 0-7-3) behind early in the first half.

UCLA added to their lead 49 seconds into the second half, as midfielder Ryan Becher scored the second goal of the match. Seven minutes later at the 53rd minute, midfielder Sean Karani scored the final goal of the night for the Bruins with an assist by Ochoa.

The Aztecs fought hard and head coach Ryan Hopkins believed that his team came out to play in the second half, despite the two goals scored by the Bruins.

“I thought the guys did a really good job from an intensity and closing, and our desire to win the ball perspective that got us back into the game,” Hopkins said. “I thought we carried on that pretty well in the second half. UCLA just made some pretty special plays out there and sometimes you just have to tip your cap to the other team.”

San Diego State seniors (from left) Henry Smith-Hastie, Reid Sproat, Seth Clark, Owen Zaldivar and Alexander Levengood receive framed jerseys as part of senior night celebrations on Friday, Nov. 10 at the SDSU Sports Deck. (Mariadelcarmen Zuniga)

Sproat only played for the Aztecs for one season and for him, one of the best memories was how his teammates accepted him into the team.

“Coming from a different school for four years, I didn’t really know what to expect, but you know all the boys they welcomed me in with open arms,” Sproat said. “Even though I was only here for like two, or three months, I feel I am an Aztec for life and I will always remember this family.”

Hopkins and Sproat have agreed that this year’s team was quite special.

“(We were) the last team in the country to concede a goal, being ranked in the top 25 for four or five weeks,” Hopkins said. “Going undefeated in non-conference — the national rankings — those are all things that we are really happy for.”

“The ability to deal with adversity, we didn’t get the results we wanted but you know I saw these guys work in training every single day,” Sproat said. “It wasn’t easy to come after those results. It’s not easy to show up for training. But everyone came in with a good attitude. We leaned on each other and I think that helped us get through to the end.”

Wrapping up the 2023 season, Hopkins is now looking forward to the 2024 season and seeing certain areas that the team needs to work on as a whole.

“We’ve got to figure out how to score some goals in these big games,” Hopkins said. “There’s a lot of moments that we have to be a bit better at, (like) how we defend in transition and different things like that.”

“I think the future’s bright for these boys in this program,” Sproat said.

About the Contributor
Abigail Segoviano
Abigail Segoviano, '24-25 Mundo Azteca Editor
Originally from Richmond, California, Abigail Segoviano is a second-year student, majoring in Journalism with a minor in Spanish. This is Abigail’s second year at the Daily Aztec where she got the opportunity to expand her writing skills as a journalist. As a staff writer last year she had the opportunity to mainly cover the entire season of women’s volleyball and also covered a couple of games for women’s basketball. This year her main focus is to branch out and write for different sports. Additionally to get involved in other sections such as Multimedia and Mundo Azteca. Abigail is the Vice President of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (SDSU Chapter). Abigail received an award from The Daily Aztec: “Consistent Contributor.” In her free time, she enjoys reading, watching sports, listening to music, and going on adventures with friends.