ATHERTON (9-4) – UC Santa Cruz started a three-match road trip as they took on NAIA member Menlo College in Atherton. The Oaks would score two goals in the second half to defeat the Banana Slugs 3-0.
In the first half, the half was played at a very even pace between the two teams. Menlo outshot UC Santa Cruz 5-2 and each team had two corner kicks apiece. UC Santa Cruz had their final shot of the half with 14:14 left off the foot of Ronaldo Nava but his shot went wide right. With 2:34 remaining in the half, Caden Mink scored off a pass from Jesus Ortega to give the Oaks a 1-0 lead at halftime.
In the second half, the two teams would play another even half. The Banana Slugs would have their best chance to tie with 37:03 remaining, but Jake Rhodes had his shot saved. UC Santa Cruz would have their last shot of the match off the foot of Ben Blackfield, with 18:28 left, but his shot went wide left. Menlo's Giovanny Gomes scored a minute later, off a pass from Mink to extend the Oaks' lead to 2-0. Alexandros Chaitidis would add the final Oaks tally, off another Mink assist, to make the score 3-0 with 14:47 left.
Menlo had a 12-7 shot advantage, while UCSC had a 6-5 edge in corner kicks. Gabriel Palomares and Rhodes had two shots apiece to lead the Banana Slugs. Andrew Pimentel had four saves in goal on his first start of the year. The Banana Slugs will continue their road trip this weekend as they head to Washington on Friday to take on Whitman College in Spokane. The match will be played at Whitworth Soccer Field on the campus of Whitworth University.