Aztecs enter win column with 2-1 victory over LIU Brooklyn


Abraham Jewett

Redshirt sophomore midfielder Keegan Kelly attempts to maintain possession of the ball during the Aztecs 2-1 victory over LIU Brooklyn on Sept. 7 at the SDSU Sports Deck.

by Cristian Alvarez, Staff Writer

San Diego State men’s soccer beat LIU Brooklyn, 2-1, in the first game of the Courtyard Marriott San Diego Central Aztec Soccer Tournament on Sept. 7 at the SDSU Sports Deck.

The victory was the first of the season for SDSU (1-2-1), and came in its second home game of the year.

Head coach Lev Kirshner said the victory was one the Aztecs had been waiting for.

“It’s definitely something we’ve been searching for, and it’s taken too long,” Kirshner said.

Despite only three shots on target combined between the team’s in the first half, both scored before the 45-minute recess.

LIU Brooklyn (1-3-1) was able to score after a mistake by senior defender Alex Burkes gave the Blackbirds a penalty kick in the 44th minute.

LIU Brooklyn senior midfielder Rasmus Hansen sunk the try to give his team a 1-0 lead.

Just 46 seconds later, however, junior forward Robby Jacobs, who came on as a substitute, equalized to level the score for the Aztecs.

Jacobs said that he took advantage of a mistake by the Blackbirds goaltender, sophomore Anthony Sciola.

“The keeper came out and I took a touch,” Jacobs said. “I saw that the goal was open and I just saw a chip was there to be taken.”

In the second half, SDSU continued to stay aggressive on the attack, despite chances being created.

Kirshner said he believes his team still has room to improve on the offensive end.

“We’re still not dangerous enough in the attacking third with our shooting and taking the opportunities to shoot,” Kirshner said. “We have to put a little more hunger toward goal.”

As the team kept pushing, a shot from junior midfielder Pablo Pelaez gave the Aztecs a 2-1 advantage at the 69 minute mark.

Pelaez said that he noticed Sciola out of position before taking the game-winning shot.

“We’re tied 1-1 and we’re fighting to get our first win. I saw the keeper a little bit off his line…gave it a go and it went in,” Pelaez said.

Kirshner praised Pelaez for his performance.

“(Pelaez) is playing like he is one of the best in the country right now,” Kirshner said. “He has been a very important piece to us in our attacking end.”

In the 77th minute the Blackbirds suffered a loss when Sciola was given a red card, after a diving challenge for the ball on the south side of the field.

Being down one man made things difficult for LIU Brooklyn, as the Aztecs continued to control possession for the majority of the rest of the match.

Kirshner said the victory is a positive step for the team moving forward.

“We all know that we have the opportunity to be a good team. We believe that we can win games…this is a big springboard for us,” he said.

The Aztecs will complete the tournament on Sept. 9, taking on UC Irvine at the SDSU Sports Deck.