Oaks men have the golden touch in GSAC soccer tourney


No. 25 Menlo College's historic men's soccer season continued Thursday in the Golden State Athletic Conference tournament with yet another dramatic, come-from-behind victory.

David Beary scored less than five minutes into overtime to give the Oaks a 3-2 victory over Vanguard.

David Beary
Menlo (14-4-1) plays top-seeded Westmont in Saturday's 4 p.m. championship match at Biola. The Warriors beat The Master's College, 1-0, in overtime to advance.

Game time temperature was 95 degrees as the Oaks started hot, scoring just over 11 minutes into the contest. On a corner kick, Ryan Onizuka delivered a beautiful ball to the back post, where defenseman Alex Avila came crashing in hard and buried the header for his second goal of the season. The assist was Onizuka's 19th, which puts him in sole possession of first place for career assists in school history.

Vanguard answered 11 minutes later on a free kick in their attacking third that was taken by Zac Way. He dumped it into the box and found the head of Nathan Miramontes, who diverted it into the net to tie the game.

Five minutes later, the Lions grabbed the lead off a shot, a deflection and the post as Jared Gould recorded the goal.

In the second half, Menlo's versatile sophomore Luis Nunez took the halftime talk to heart and came out firing. Just over four minutes into the half, he ripped an unassisted goal from 30 feet out to tie the match.

Four minutes and 25 seconds into the first overtime perio, Menlo again used a set piece to deliver a goal. Jonny Ensch had a throw in from the corner and tossed it near post to Avila, who headed it into the box.

The ball hopped once and was set up perfectly for the left foot of Beary, who delivered with a perfect ball into the top left corner of the net. The goal was his third of the season and second in the last three games.

Vanguard outshot the Oaks, 21-12, including a 9-4 advantage in shots on frame. Menlo was remarkably efficient with its chances.

Alex Coates-McDowall made seven saves in the winning effort.

Women's basketball

Menlo College took over in the second half and cruised to a 70-57 victory over UC Merced on Thursday.

The game started off as if it would be a defensive battle, but scoring would come in bunches once both teams got their first shots through the cylinder.

Menlo had nine steals in the first half and finished with 19 in the contest, playing stifling defensive that made things tough for the Bobcats all night.

Celina Pagan ignited the Oaks offense knocking down four three's in the first half alone. However, both teams shot 41% from the field in the first half leading to a 32-31 score in favor of Menlo.

Menlo used the intermission to their advantage, coming out firing on all cylinders in the second half. The Oaks started the third quarter on an 11-2 run to increase the score to 43-33. The Oaks would only give up eight points the rest of the way in the quarter and would jump out to a 49-41 lead to end the third.

The Oaks best quarter was the final quarter of the contest, as they would start the fourth on a 15-2 run to increase the lead to 64-43. Menlo would stay in control the rest of the way, winning the contest 70-57 for their first victory of the season.

Celina Pagan continued her excellent shooting night; knocking down two more three's and shot 4-5 from the field in the second half. Not only were Pagan's shots going down tonight, she played suffocating defense having seven steals in the game. Pagan finished the game with a game-high 24 points.

Breanna Turner was extremely effective in the post for the Oaks, scoring nine points in the second half en route to a 10-point night. Aliyah Brantley fouled out in the contest but not before scoring nine points in the game. Ashlyn Monk and Madison Rocha chipped in seven points of their own.

The Oaks will go up against CSU Maritime on Saturday at 6 p.m. The Oaks have a 24-2 record against CSU Maritime in the school's respective histories. Menlo has not lost to CSU Maritime since 2012 and come into the game having won the last 11 contests.

— Menlo Athletics

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