Late Burst Breaks Spartans Against Aggies

San José, Calif. – A strong 70 minutes of soccer proved not to be enough on Saturday as San José State dropped its penultimate non-conference match against visiting UC Davis. 

Senior Suliman Khorami was able to tally his second goal of the season but it was the Aggies who emerged with a 3-1 victory. 

"Davis deserves a lot of credit," said head coach Simon Tobin after the match. "I thought we were pretty dominant in the first half but we're kind of fragile right now. The momentum switched and we just didn't have an answer." 

The hosts continually attacked the UC Davis defense, eventually finishing the night with a 9-2 advantage in shots on goal. Khorami came off the bench to tally the team's lone goal while forward Rodolfo Castro led the side with three shots on the night. 

Khorami's goal came in the match's 50th minute, staking his team to a lead with a laser from 20 yards out. The senior striker gathered a pass from junior Carlos Gomez-Zavala before finding just enough space to get off a right-footed strike that beat the goalkeeper. 

The Spartans would hold that advantage for the next 20-plus minutes before the visitors from Davis equalized on a 72nd minute goal off the foot of Jye Citizen. 

The Aggies would grab the lead soon thereafter and SJSU was unable to pull any closer despite earning six corner kicks and taking two shots in the match's final 15 minutes. Tobin's team finished the night with a 10-4 advantage in corners while both teams ended the match with 11 shots a piece. 

Saturday's match marked yet another challenging non-conference contest for San José State as UC Davis picked up its third road result of the season to date (at Wisconsin, at Marquette). The Spartans have played three road matches, two teams that made the 2018 NCAA Tournament and one top-10 opponent thus far, with a match set at No. 2 Stanford on Tuesday. 

"Our goal was for this schedule to prepare us for conference play and I think we'll be ready," Tobin said. "We just need to get a little tougher mentally. We've been to the WAC final in back-to-back seasons and that's still our goal this year." 

The club now sets its sights on that final tuneup before WAC play begins, heading to The Farm to face Stanford in front of a national TV audience. Kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m. on the Pac-12 Networks.