SAN LUIS OBISPO – The Cal Poly men's soccer program made senior forward Justin Dhillon's 10th-minute goal stand as the difference Friday evening as the Mustangs upended No. 6 UCLA in front of 7,032 fans at Alex G. Spanos Stadium, 1-0.
Junior goalkeeper Eric Kam made two saves to record his second successive shutout and push his goalless streak to 237 straight minutes for Cal Poly (2-4-1), which chalked up its first victory against top 10 ranked opponent since defeating UCLA – also ranked sixth at the time – in Los Angeles on Sept. 5, 2013.
Friday's meeting was the first between the Mustangs and Bruins since UCLA (4-2-1) eliminated Cal Poly in the first round of last year's NCAA Tournament.
The 7,032-fan attendance figure marked the third largest crowd in the nation this year and the 11th time that the Cal Poly men's soccer program has drawn 7,000-plus fans to Spanos Stadium.
Dhillon (above) notched Friday's match-winner with the game's first shot attempt after sophomore defender Nick Carroll sent a ball in from the left sideline. Dhillon brought the ball down and fired into the top right corner of the UCLA net from 30 yards.
Cal Poly, meanwhile, kept UCLA without a shot attempt until Bruins defender Abu Danladi fired wide in the 29th minute. UCLA recorded three more shots during the final 69 seconds of the first half, but failed to test Kam.
Kam eventually chalked up his first save on 60 minutes, turning away Danladi. With 15 minutes remaining, UCLA midfielder Brian Iloski hit the right post with his attempt and Kam preserved Cal Poly's lead 107 seconds from full time by stopping Danladi a second time.
Kept to two shot attempts for the opening 83 minutes, Cal Poly received its second shot on target from freshman forward Kenneth Higgins in the 84th.
Cal Poly returns to action with a Thursday, Sept. 29 Big West Conference-opening matchup at Cal State Fullerton. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
Photo courtesy of Ray Ambler (RAPhotos.com)