IRVINE — Cal Poly San Luis Obispo defenders appeared to get a piece of most of the 18 shots posted by host UC Irvine in the Big West Conference opener Wednesday.
This, as well as a penalty kick that amounted to the Mustangs' lone shot on goal, allowed the unranked visitors to post a 1-0 men's soccer upset of the No. 7-ranked Anteaters.
The win also left Cal Poly with a piece of the Big West lead.
"Everything," UCI Coach George Kuntz said of well-positioned Cal Poly defenders, who helped the visitors (4-3-2) stave off an 18-3 shot disadvantage. "They got a piece of everything, and that's their deal. You've got to give them a lot of credit."
While generous with praise of the Mustangs' stingy defense, Kuntz said the Anteaters (8-2) have mostly themselves to blame for myriad missed scoring chances.
"We've got to finish our opportunities," said Kuntz, whose team played with 11 players against 10 after a second yellow card to the same player prompted a Mustang ejection in the 57th minute. "I think we played a bit young tonight. With a fairly young team, you're going to have fairly erratic nights. And this was one of them. Most of the season we've been finishing, as one of the leading scoring teams in the nation."