Spartans Shoot Way To Draw In Houston

HOUSTON – Trailing in the second half of an away match for the second time in as many contests this season, San José State was able to answer back once again to earn another road result on Saturday. 

It was senior Rudi Castro who came up clutch for the Spartans (1-1-1, 1-1-1 WAC), netting his first goal of the season to lead his club to a thrilling 1-1 draw in Houston. 

SJSU finished the afternoon with a big 30-9 shot advantage against the hosts. The team's 30 shots marks the program's most attempts in a match since Sept. 18, 2008, when San José State took 32 tries in a 2-2 draw against Cal Poly at Spartan Stadium. 

The shot total is the most for any WAC team this season and the sixth-most in all of Division I. In matches against D-I opponents, the 30 shot attempts rank No. 2 nationally (Northern Illinois - 31 vs. Chicago State).

The trio of Castro, Nicolas Brenes and Willy Miranda paced the team at Sorrels Field, each taking five shots on the day. Castro and Brenes both put a pair on frame while Miranda finished the match with one shot on goal. 

After surrendering a 50th minute goal to Houston Baptist, the Spartans wasted no time hunting for an equalizer. 

On the next trip down the pitch, sophomore Josh Redfield earned his team a corner when a powerful shot was deflected out of play by the Husky keeper. The hosts would then commit a foul in the box in the ensuing scrum off the corner, setting the stage for Castro to take SJSU's first penalty of the 2020-21 campaign. 

The nation's assist-leader sent the keeper diving right and the ball into the back of the net, leveling the scoreline at 1-1. 

That score would hold for the next 59 minutes as the hosts were able to turn away a flurry of San José State shots through the end of the second half and extra time. Brenes and Castro would combine to get off four shots in the match's final three minutes before the contest ultimately ended in a draw. 

The match marked the Spartans first overtime contest of the year. 

SJSU finished the afternoon with a 10-3 advantage in shots on goal and took 13 corner kicks to Houston Baptist's three. 

Despite being one of the nation's longest conference road trips, the program has enjoyed a spectacular run as of late in the state of Texas. San José State is now 6-1-3 in the Lone Star State since 2015 and still hasn't lost in the state since that 2015 season. 

The road success has really followed the program everywhere lately as SJSU has now earned a result in four of its last five away matches. 

The Spartans will look to build on their momentum as the club returns home to face first-place and unbeaten UTRGV next week. Kickoff for that one is set for 7:00 p.m. on Saturday night at Spartan Soccer Complex.