The eighth-seeded UCLA men's soccer team advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament after a 3-0 shutout victory over ninth-seeded Clemson in third round action Sunday evening. Freshman forward David Estrada scored two goals, and sophomore midfielder Sal Zizzo continued his postseason tear, contributing to all three goals.
Much like the Bruins' second round win over Harvard, UCLA got off to a quick start, scoring twice in the first 25 minutes through Estrada and Zizzo.
The Bruins kept Clemson on its toes for much of the game, peppering the Tiger defense with 13 shots, eight of which were on goal. With just 6 minutes left in regulation, Estrada added his second goal of the game after beating two defenders, following a pass from Zizzo.
"They were pushing up, and I was able to make a deep run, and Estrada followed up in the middle and made a great finish," said Zizzo.
Estrada credited Zizzo, saying, "Both goals were practically Sal's. I credit him for every goal I've scored because he just puts them there and I just finish them."
Bruin goalkeeper Eric Reed recorded his second-straight shutout with a strong game between the pipes. He had two saves in the contest. Marfuggi had four saves for Clemson.
"They are by far the most technical team we have played this year," said Clemson head coach Trevor Adair. "We knew they liked to move the ball around. We just couldn't stay with them. The kids fought hard, but the breaks just didn't fall our way. I give credit to UCLA. They are the best team we have played this year. Anybody that plays them is going to have a hard time."
"The guys have responded so well to the changes we've made," said UCLA head coach Jorge Salcedo. "This is literally the third game that we've played with this lineup, with Kyle Nakazawa up front. They're jelling well. David (Estrada) and Kyle are jelling well together and are obviously holding balls for us, being goal-dangerous, scoring goals. I couldn't be happier with what's happening right now with our front-runners."