Aug. 24, 2012
RIVERDALE, N.Y. - Villanova scored three unanswered goals in the first 45 minutes and rolled to a 5-1 victory over Manhattan in the season opener for both teams played here on Friday night at Gaelic Park. The five goals are more than the Wildcats scored in a single game in 2011 when their season high was three and the most since a 5-0 win over Temple to open the 1998 campaign.
Five different Wildcats took care of the goals for Villanova.
Senior Kyle Soroka, who scored the key goal to help lift the Wildcats to a 1-0 win over USF in the BIG EAST playoffs last November, opened the scoring in the 2012 season tonight for the Wildcats. Soroka took a pass from junior Dylan Renna and then sent a blast that beat a diving Christopher Lands at the 19:20 mark to stake the Wildcats to a 1-0 lead.
"I thought we were a little sloppy in the first 10 minutes but Soroka's goal allowed us to take a deep breath," stated Villanova head coach Tom Carlin. "We settled down and really played the way we needed to play."
Less than two minutes later, Villanova struck again. This time it began with a corner kick finished by senior Emerson Lawrence at 20:56. William Cason was credited with the assist to boost VU to a 2-0 advantage.
Sophomores Hayden Harr and Oscar Umar teamed up for goal number three with just 4:04 left to play in the first half. This play also began off a corner kick with Harr gaining credit for the assist on the Umar goal.
The Wildcats' first half control was evident not just in the score but an 11-5 advantage in shots.
VU maintained its edge in the second half and extended the margin to 4-0 in the 78th minute. In this instance, senior Alec Weiss connected with classmate Ryan Whalen at 77:22 on the right side. Whalen finished the play with a right-foot shot into the corner past Lands.
"We got goals from Emo and Whalen and that's something we have talked about - making sure our defensive midfielders and backs are part of the attack when the opportunities present themselves," Carlin said. "Those guys and our back group did a good job of that tonight."
Freshman Damilola Adetola joined the scoring party at 81:13 when he collected a rebound and deposited an unassisted goal into the net.
The final score of the night came off a penalty kick by Manhattan's Tommy Amos at 87:01 to make the count 5-1.
All three Villanova goalies saw action in this one. Senior John Fogarty picked up the win and made a pair of saves in his 73:17 of action. Sophomore Andrew Weakly was credited with one save in his 13:44 minutes. Freshman Casey DeFluri finished up for the Wildcats.
"For the most part, this was a good 90-minute effort," stated Carlin. "There are some areas we need to work on, but overall whole I think we responded well to some of the adjustments we made after our two scrimmages."
Villanova (1-0 overall) hopes to match its success in the opener when it hosts Stony Brook on Tuesday in its home debut at the West Campus Soccer Complex (4:00 p.m./Nova Nation All-Access).