College Soccer News: UC Irvine Wins 2012 Opener on Road against USD
The UC Irvine (UCI) men’s soccer team won their season opener 2-0 on Friday night against the University of San Diego (USD) at Torero Stadium in San Diego.
Each squad had their share of shots in the first half. Lester Hayes III put the first one on target in the 26th minute for UCI (1-0-0). Torero goalkeeper Michael D’Arrigo grabbed it before a flying Anteater attacker could get to it. UCI managed the only two shots on goal as the half came to an end.
The action got going quickly in the second half as UCI jumped onto the board. Sophomore Cameron Iwasa beat the defender and closed in on D’Arrigo before punching it by the keeper to take the lead in the 48th minute.
The intensity turned physical quickly as the two sides jockeyed for advantage. UCI’s Dennis Martinez was given a yellow card in the 53rd minute. USD earned its own yellow card in that same minute after ‘Eater keeper Michael Breslin was hit hard while snatching a USD cross.
The squads exchanged shots as play picked up in the 56th minute. A total of seven shots were taken from the 56th minute to the 62nd minute, with two on target.
USD (0-1-0) had its best chance of the match in the 73rd minute. Patrick Wallen blasted a shot that Breslin would lay out and keep out of the net. The Toreros kept the pressure on and Breslin would stand strong once again, this time saving a Christian Duke shot.
The Anteater defense kept the Toreros back just enough, and the offense rewarded them by putting up the decisive second goal. Hayes III broke out and nudged a shot on goal. The ball trickled through D’Arrigo and Gor Kirakosyan pounced on it and shoved it in the net in the 89th minute for the eventual final score of 2-0.
Iwasa picked up where he left off in 2011 with his goal. He also led all ‘Eaters with five shots. He and Kirakosyan put two shots on goal, and they, along with Hayes III’s shot on goal in the first half, accounted for the five for UCI.
Kirakosyan notched his first career goal as an Anteater in his first career match.
Goalkeeper Michael Breslin also made his first career start in net stopping three shots and picking up the shutout.
The Anteaters will come home for its next match Friday, August 31st as they host the Long Island Blackbirds. The match will be the second of the day in day one of the UCI Invitational. UC Riverside and Detroit University come together in the first match starting at 4:30 p.m. with the UCI-LIU match following at 7:00 p.m. The tournament resumes on Sunday as UCR and LIU will match up at 1:15 p.m. followed by the concluding match between UCI and Detroit at 4:30 p.m.
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