Sept. 21, 2009

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - The No. 18 Michigan State men's soccer team suffered its first loss of the season on Sunday (Sept. 20), falling to the University of San Diego, 2-0. MSU goalkeeper Avery Steinlage surrendered a goal for the first time since Oct. 15, 2008 - snapping his NCAA record shutout streak at a staggering 1,318:26. The previous mark was 974:20 set by Milos Kocic of Loyola (MD) last season.

"I thought it was a game that could have gone either way," said MSU head coach Damon Rensing. "Credit to San Diego, they capitalized on a couple plays and finished. They were a great opponent that will prepare us for the upcoming Big Ten schedule."

The Spartans created a few chances in the first half, but were unable to capitalize. MSU's Domenic Barone had a chance from eight yards out in the 12th minute that missed the net and then he had another in the 24th minute when he weaved his way through, the Torero defense and fired wide from just outside the penalty area. Jeff Ricondo had the Spartans best scoring chance when he beat USD goalkeeper Kelin Briones, but his shot ricocheted off the crossbar.

After a scoreless first half, the Toreros got on the board in the 61st minute when Andrew Field made it a 1-0 game. With the Spartans pressing for the tying goal late in the game, San Diego's Patrick Wallen took a long pass in the 85th minute and beat Steinlage to make the final score 2-0.

"We had some good chances and if we had a couple things bounce our way, the momentum could have changed," said Rensing." I think we ran out of gas today, but we learned a lot about what we do well and what we need to get better at for the Big Ten season."

Steinlage made five saves in the game for MSU.

"We knew his streak wasn't going to last forever," said Rensing. "When the season is over, we can look back on it as being pretty amazing. Credit to Avery and our defense."

The Spartans (4-1-1) will next take on Ohio State in the Big Ten opener on Sunday (Sept. 27) at 2:30 at DeMartin Stadium.