Oct. 26, 2013
CHICAGO, Ill. - With the BIG EAST season nearing its conclusion Villanova journeyed here eager to add to its points totals. A first half goal from junior Aaron Dennis and solid defense delivered the Wildcats a 1-0 victory here this afternoon over DePaul. The win boosts VU's overall record to 8-7-1 overall, 3-4-0 in the BIG EAST.
The Wildcats now have nine points in conference plays with two games remaining in the regular season: at home next Saturday against Xavier at 3:00 p.m. on West Campus and at Georgetown in the regular season finale on Nov. 8.
"We'll take the win," stated Villanova head coach Tom Carlin. "It wasn't as pretty as we would have liked and DePaul really sent a lot of guys forward late in the game. But we held them off and got the three points, which we had to have. We could have been mathematically eliminated if we had lost.
"We live to fight another day."
Junior Aaron Dennis got the Wildcats on the scoreboard in the 34th minute when he scored on a shot from the middle of the box 10 yards in front of the Blue Demons' goal that beat DePaul's Eric Sorby. The official time of the goal was 33:11.
"Any time you get that first goal it's big," stated Carlin. "It takes a little of the pressure off and you aren't in position where you have to chase the game."
The Wildcats took that lead into intermission. At the break DePaul held an 8-5 edge in shots and a 6-0 edge in corner kicks. Villanova goalkeeper Andrew Weakly made three first half saves to help keep the Blue Demons off the board through the first 45 minutes.
DePaul pushed hard to draw even over the final 45 minutes but Villanova turned away every bid. Weakly ended the day with five saves as DePaul outshot the `Cats 18-10 on the day.
"Weakly made a couple of big saves for us and the backline played well," stated Carlin.
The win is Villanova's fourth in the last five contests and comes on the heels of a tough 2-1 loss to Providence at home in double overtime on Wednesday.
"I thought the mood of the team was good," stated Carlin. `We could have dwelled on that loss and allowed it to affect us moving forward. We didn't do that, though. Our mental approach was good. We got the three points."
The Wildcats will be idle until next Saturday when they host Xavier. The extra rest should be a boost at a point in the campaign where season long bruises tend to accumulate.
"We're pretty excited about the rest," says Carlin. "With the Wednesday-Saturday format, it can wear you down and there is school too. It's will be good to take some time and focus in on Xavier."