Men’s soccer started out the season scoreless with a 0-0 draw against Cal Poly Pomona for its season opener.
Dixie State University had three shots and two shots on goal with a total of 10 saves by senior goalkeeper Spencer Anderson. Though this game is non-conference, it still counts for Dixie’s overall record.
Head coach Danny Ortiz said the season got real for them right away. He said Cal Poly was a technical team that moves the ball quickly and starts shooting as soon as it passes midfield.
“[Cal Poly was] something we [looked] forward to playing ,” Ortiz said. “We need to make sure we are organized defensively once we lose the ball.”
Senior Alex Galvan, a junior physical education major from San Antonio, Texas, said the team had been working a lot on formations and shape in the back in order to properly prepare for the Broncos’ defense.
And that shone through as Cal Poly, which is picked to take fourth in the California Collegiate Athletic Association, received only one shot and one shot on goal with six saves from the Dixie offense.
Galvan said the main thing DSU has been working on is offense. He said goal scoring was one of the main problems in its season last year.
With that, Ortiz has recruited 10 players to the team, most who are offensively minded, which has it reshape its offense.
“We have gone back to having two forwards, which we haven’t before, but then again we have never had those guys who could play in those positions,” Ortiz said. “Every new guy we have added has added something different, a new component. We really are exited so we can see what we can do.”
Ortiz said along with offensive players, they have also recruited some players to add depth to the defense, and overall the guys have come in ready to go. There is a positive atmosphere from this point on the team going forward. He said the positive atmosphere alone will carry the team a long way through the season.
“We are more of a team [this year], and I think it shows on the field,” midfielder Erik Shallenberger, a senior business major from Las Vegas. “Working as a team together is really crucial in soccer, and I think we have that this year going for us.”
Shallenberger the players know the players in the field, such as whether they are a right-footed or left-footed player. He said the team can better understand the players knowing how each player plays the game.
The Red Storm will go toe-to-toe with the University of California, San Bernadino on Saturday at 11 a.m. in San Bernadino, California.