Cal State Fullerton men’s soccer will begin its two-game home series against the UC Davis Aggies and the Sacramento State Hornets Thursday.
The Titans sit in the top spot in the Big West Southern Division and had a strong start to their conference schedule after walking away from their road matches last weekend with some success and an extra boost of confidence.
“To get a ‘W’ on the road was definitely a big positive. We were all really excited about that,” said Titans team captain Nicolo D’Amato. “When we go on the road, that’s what we want. We need results. We need points.”
The Titans took a hit early in conference play when they fell 5-2 to the UC Santa Barbara Gauchos last Thursday, but they feel the loss motivated them.
“We definitely mentally locked in, and that was a group effort,” said Titans midfielder Irving Arvizu. “We’ll bring that into the next game.”
The Hornets and the Aggies both hold a conference record of 1-0-1 after they each went into double-overtime matches in which neither team was able to walk away with the golden goal.
Sacramento State took a 1-0 win against the CSU Northridge Matadors and died against the UC Irvine Anteaters 3-3.
Conversely, UC Davis tied its game against the Matadors 1-1 before shutting out the Anteaters 2-0.
The Titans will meet the Aggies first in their match Thursday, and they are excited to get back to the friendly confines of Titan Stadium.
“We love playing at home,” D’Amato said. “We have a goal. We don’t lose at home … We’re very confident on our own field.”
CSUF has had a total of five home games in its preseason, losing once to the Utah Valley University Wolverines who shut them out 2-0.
Titans defender Sam Molz said the mentality the team has on the field has been crucial to their performance and that their key to success is scoring first.
“We just can’t have mental lapses,” Molz said. “When we have chances to put teams away, we have to go up two or three goals just to take the fight out of them.”
A huge theme among the Titans this year has been approaching their training schedule one game at a time and now, CSUF is zeroing in on UC Davis.
“We know (Davis is) an athletic and fast team,” Molz said. “We haven’t focused too much on (Sacramento State). We just have to get through Davis first but after we play them, we’ll look for Sac State.”
While D’Amato said the Titans are trying to take things “one game at a time,” they remain focused on one goal a bit further out: Winning the Big West.
“We’re all very competitive players and a competitive team … Hopefully, at the end of the day, we get the result that we want,” D’Amato said.