Since the opening whistle of its Friday game against Manhattan College, the San Diego State men’s soccer team has played flawlessly, thoroughly dominating opponents who take the field against them.
The supremacy began with a 4-0 dismantling of Manhattan and continued with a quality victory against 21st-ranked Penn, 2-0.
As a result of the two wins, SDSU captured its first outright title of the Courtyard Marriott San Diego Central Tournament.
Junior midfielder Jose Altamirano led the charge by scoring three goals in the two games en route to being named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Offensive Player.
“I feel good about the way I’m practicing and playing,” Altamirano said. “But I have to give it up to my teammates; they are the reason I am scoring.”
Altamirano continued to accumulate accolades throughout the weekend, being named to the College Soccer News National Team of the Week and the Bank of the West Pacific-12 Conference Men’s Soccer Player of the Week. Altamirano is the second Aztec in three weeks to win the award, the other being sophomore forward Miles Byass.
SDSU (3-1-1) will hope to ride the hot streak of Altamirano as it travels to Tulsa, Okla. to battle the Golden Eagles of Oral Roberts University tomorrow.
The Aztecs, averaging 20.4 shots and 2.2 goals per game, will look to Altamirano, Byass and redshirt sophomore Jordan Ongaro to provide an offensive spark.
Defensively, SDSU will rely on senior co-captain Daniel Steres, redshirt senior Justin Davies, sophomore Casey Meuser and freshman Tyler Smith to supply a shutout for the third consecutive game. Redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Blake Hylen, who comes into the game with a team-leading 10 saves, is the anchor to the defense that has only allowed five goals in five games.
“The attitude has definitely changed on this team,” Aztecs head coach Lev Kirshner said. “We are back to our preseason mentality.”
Oral Roberts (1-3), a member of the Summit League, comes into the match averaging 12.25 shots and 1.5 goals per game. The defense surrenders an average of three goals per game.
The Golden Eagles rely on a multitude of players to put the ball in the back of the net. Sid Stewart, Trevor Laffoon, John David James, Jarrett Hamilton and Aaron Douthit have all scored this season, each totaling one goal.
If the SDSU continues to play strong defense and get the ball to its playmakers, the Aztecs should come out on top.