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Northridge Offense Draws Blank in UCLA’s 1-0 Soccer Win

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SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Offense?

The Cal State Northridge soccer team was too busy playing defense Friday night against fourth-ranked UCLA to even set up a choice scoring play.

The Bruins amassed 12 shots on goal and controlled the ball for the better part of 90 minutes to defeat Northridge, 1-0, in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Pacific Division match before 1,836 at North Campus Stadium.

Northridge took only three shots toward goalkeeper Chris Snitko, who made two saves for UCLA (12-1, 4-0 in conference play).

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“We did a lot of running tonight,” said Matt Davis, a Northridge defender. “(Goalkeeper) Mark (Macdonald) saved our . . . lots of times.”

Macdonald had a season-high 11 saves, but it was Sean Henderson’s second-half goal that is still bouncing around in his mind.

Macdonald deflected a Bruin pass in traffic near the left goal post. The ball bounced toward Henderson, who pumped it into the Matador goal from four yards while Macdonald was on the ground. “I should have got that cross,” Macdonald said.

In the closing seconds, Northridge (7-7, 1-2) had what Coach Marwan Ass’ad called “the shot of the game,” which could have forced overtime.

Midfielder Yared Gebreyesus, alone in the left flank, took a pass from Armando Valdivia and cracked a shot high over the crossbar from 18 yards.

“He should have dribbled it in and placed it where he wanted it,” Ass’ad said.

Valdivia, the Matadors’ scoring leader who scored a goal in each of Northridge’s previous three matches, took only one shot.

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