Chico beats Holy Names 2-1 in men’s soccer home opener

Omar Nuno was the Wildcat hero of the game, scoring both goals in Chico State's 2-1 victory over Holy Names University. Photo credit: John Domogma

The Chico State men’s soccer team defeated Holy Names University in its home opener, 2-1. Both goals came from junior forward, Omar Nuno.

The Wildcats had a slow start in the first half. The first goal of the game came from Holy Names University during the 38th minute when Ignacio Alvarez, senior midfielder, shot the penalty kick. While Alvarez shot to the left, Wildcat goalkeeper Triston Montoya flew right in the opposite direction, allowing the first goal.

But that was the only point Holy Names University was able to score. The Wildcats started stepping up after the goal.

The first goal from Nuno was scored when there was less than a minute in the first half. Sophomore midfielder Carter Johnson fired a long pass to Nuno from midfield, setting him up for the first Wildcat goal. The game was tied 1-1, all heading into the second half of the play.

“I think we started super slow— our team was just not running,” Nuno said. “We were not defending well. It was just a rough start.”

Wildcat sophomore midfielder Jesus Ramos received a yellow card in the early minutes of the second half.

“About half time, we realized that we needed to step it up,” Nuno said.

The second winning goal for Chico State was scored during the 57th minute of the second half. Senior forward Matt Hurlow assisted Nuno on his second goal of the game.

However, the Wildcats got into trouble toward the end of the second half with junior defender Isaiah Dargan receiving a yellow card. Then the ‘Cats lost a player, Sean Gallagher, to a red card, for a verbal offense.

“This team doesn’t like to lose. We had a rough start to the season, so we had to get the win tonight,” Nuno said.

However, the Wildcats didn’t let their guard down in the second half despite the foul trouble. Chico State’s offense put pressure on Holy Names University’s defense the whole game.

“The team was playing together; we were linking together,” Nuno said. “We were finally playing like a family.”

The Chico State men’s soccer team will be playing Humboldt State on Friday, Sept. 25 at 3 p.m. in Arcata.

Julie Ortega can be reached at [email protected] or @julieOrtega_ on Twitter.