Bulldog Men's Soccer Wins Seventh Straight With Shutout Over La Verne
The University of Redlands men's soccer program used timely offense and lock-down defense to blank the Leopards of La Verne, 2-0. Thanks to two goals in a five-minute span in the second half, Redlands earned its seventh-straight victory and now sits atop the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) standings with just two regular-season matches to play.
In front of numerous Bulldog men's soccer alumni on Homecoming weekend, Redlands came close a few times to taking the lead in the first half. Sophomore forward Charles Izydorek (Redlands, CA) ripped a shot in the 30th minute that was headed for the bottom-left corner of the net, but La Verne senior goalkeeper Jonathyn Lomeli (Los Angeles, CA) sprawled to his right and got a fingertip on the shot, pushing it wide. Minutes later, Bulldog junior defender Richie Marquez (Pomona, CA) and senior forward Noah Prudhomme (San Anselmo, CA) both put powerful headers on frame, but again, good saves were made by Lomeli.
By the halftime break, Redlands had out-shot La Verne, 10-5, while also holding the corner-kick advantage, 2-0.
Pushing the tempo of the match to try and find the break-through, the Bulldogs finally found that touch of magic they were looking for in the 71st minute. After receiving a ball near the midfield line, sophomore midfielder Matej Kustura (Las Vegas, NV) went on a dynamic run, beating three Leopard defenders and then slotting a through-ball to Izydorek, who dribbled past the keeper and touched the ball into the back of the net. For Izydorek, it was his third game-winning goal on the campaign.
Just five minutes later, senior forward Alex Laughton (Pleasanton, CA) slipped a nicely-weighted penetrating pass to AJ VanderStaay (Bellingham, WA), who took a couple of touches to his left and blasted the ball into the upper-left corner of the net, securing the win for the Maroon and Gray.
On the afternoon, the Bulldogs out-shot the Leopards, 24-9, and of the nine shots taken by La Verne, none went on frame. Defensively sound all match long, Redlands did an impressive job of blocking shots and not allowing any good opportunities for the Leopards' attack. In addition to the strong defensive effort, junior goalkeeper Andreas Silva (San Jose, CA) picked up his fourth-straight shut-out victory while displaying leadership through his communication and distribution out of the back.
Redlands (11-4-3, 10-2-2) looks forward to hosting Pomona-Pitzer Colleges on Monday evening for Senior Night. Seven Bulldog players will be honored for their achievements in the men's soccer program prior to their final regular-season home contest at Farquhar Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.