SAN FRANCISCO - Junior midfielder Patrick Fisher kicked a rebound of a shot by teammate Carl Acosta seven minutes into the second half to lift California (5-3-1) to a 2-1 nonconference victory over San Francisco Friday night at Negoesco Stadium.
The Dons (5-3-1) took an early lead when Gabe Sturm scored his second goal of the season off a passing combination by Raji Ananda and Chris Roden.
Although the Bears were unable create many scoring chances, they were able to score off their first shot of the game. Cal’s Angel Quintero tried to cross the ball into the box, but after it was blocked he struck a wild shot off a loose ball that found the net at 12:29.
The Bears got the winning goal after USF keeper Conor McNulty made a save at the top of the box only to see Fisher alone with the loose ball at the near post. He just kicked it in to give Cal their fifth win of the season.
“Carl Acosta hit a pretty decent shot and it deflected off the goalie and it was just an opportunistic shot,” explained Fisher, who notched his second goal of the season. “I was just in the right place at the right time. Credit goes to the build up of the play and Carl for getting the shot off.”
USF appeared to get the tying goal late in the game, but Josh Hansen’s shot failed to cross the line after hitting the crossbar.
Cal extended its five-game unbeaten streak with Friday’s win.
“I think it was one of our better performance of the year for a full 90 minutes,” said coach Kevin Grimes. “Our players played well on both sides of the ball against a very good USF team on the road.”
After struggling at the outset of the 2001 one campaign, the Bears are starting to gel just in time for conference play.
“There was definitely a different attitude after the game,” said Fisher. “A confidence that will carry us into the next game. It was a big momentum builder for Sunday and also showed the country that we’re for real.”
The Bears play host to Santa Clara on Sunday at 2 p.m. at Edwards Stadium.