Oh, how fortunes can quickly turn.
San Diego State enjoyed an eight-game unbeaten streak as it headed into the University of Washington contest, but has now dropped two in a row in Pacific-12 Conference play, with the latest defeat coming against the ninth-ranked UCLA Bruins, 2-0, at Drake Stadium in Los Angeles.
The Bruins improved to 10-3-1 in the season, including a perfect 5-0 record in conference play, while the No. 22-ranked Aztecs dropped to 8-3-2 in the season with a 3-2 record in conference.
UCLA has now won eight games in a row versus Pac-12 opponents dating back to last season and is six points ahead of SDSU for first place in the Pac-12 standings.
“We played really well in the first half,” redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Blake Hylen said. “We really dominated and controlled the game. Slowly into the second half, we started getting more and more pressure, and it turned into a back-and-forth type of game.”
Junior forward Chandler Hoffman scored both second-half goals for the UCLA win, even though the Aztecs outshot the Bruins, 10-9, in the match, including a 5-4 advantage on net.
Redshirt sophomore forward Jordan Ongaro led SDSU with three shots, all on net, while junior midfielder Jose Altamirano had two attempts. Hylen registered two saves throughout the game.
During SDSU’s eight-game unbeaten streak earlier this season, the Aztecs outscored opponents, 18-4. In its past two defeats, SDSU has been outscored by a mark of 5-2.
Despite the recent skid, the Aztecs have outscored opponents, 25-14 this season and outshot opponents, 91-59.
SDSU’s next chance for redemption this Saturday when the Aztecs host last season’s NCAA semifinalist , University of Michigan.
“All that matters is we bounce back,” Hylen said. “It’s going to take fight, but this team is more than capable of doing so. I have all the confidence in the world that we can get it done.”