SACRAMENTO – Junior goalkeeper Eric Kam (above) recorded four saves Wednesday afternoon, but the Cal Poly men's soccer program couldn't find the equalizer for Sacramento State midfielder Christian Webb's 43rd-minute goal as the Mustangs dropped a 1-0 decision at Hornet Field.
Cal Poly sophomore midfielder George Grote led all players with four shot attempts and the Mustangs outshot the Hornets, 13-9. Cal Poly, however, placed just two of its attempts on target in seeing a five-match unbeaten run snapped at Sacramento State that dated to Oct. 22, 2000.
With his 80th career appearance as a Mustang Wednesday afternoon, senior defender Kody Wakasa set a new program record for games played, eclipsing the previous mark held by defender Patrick Sigler (2008-11) and forward David Zamora (2007-10).
With its victory, second-place Sacramento State (7-6-2, 3-3-1; 10 points) moved six points clear of the Mustangs (3-9-2, 1-5-1; four points) in the Big West Conference North Division standings with three matches remaining. Cal Poly also trails third-place UC Davis (7-7-2, 3-4-0; nine points) by five points.
Cal Poly continues its three-match road trip at Blue-Green rival and first-place UC Santa Barbara (9-5-2, 5-0-2; 17 points) on Saturday, Oct. 22. Kickoff is 8 p.m. with action televised live on Fox Prime Ticket.
With Kam chalking up saves in the fifth and 16th minutes, Cal Poly enjoyed multiple opportunities to grab an early lead with junior forward Ramiro Molina-Valerio forcing Sacramento State goalkeeper James Del Curto into a sixth-minute save before freshman forward Kenneth Higgins whistled a shot over the crossbar on seven minutes, Grote dragged an attempt wide of the right post in the 23rd and senior forward Justin Dhillon fired a free kick high in the 31st.
Outshot 9-5 in the first half, Sacramento State nevertheless produced the opening goal two minutes prior to halftime with Webb dribbling along the top of the Mustang penalty area before unleashing a shot past Kam.
Kam preserved Cal Poly's 1-0 deficit with saves in the 62nd and 69th minutes, but the Mustangs produced just one shot in goal in the second half.