WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – Follow a two hour rain delay, the No. 9 West Virginia University men’s soccer team fell, 1-0, to No. 15 Wake Forest on Sunday evening at Spry Stadium in the conclusion Nike Carolina Classic.
The Mountaineers played a man down for the final 69 minutes of the match as freshman defender Francio Henry
picked up a yellow card in the 15th minute, followed by a red card in the 21st minute, forcing him out of the match.
“I’m very proud of my team. We play awfully well and awfully hard, especially with the fact that we had to play a man down from very early on,” coach Marlon LeBlanc says. “We didn’t get a fair shake at this game today and that part is disappointing. Take nothing away from Wake Forest, I think they are an excellent team, but with 10 men we certainly proved to be the aggressor in this game.”
After a flurry of substitutions, Wake Forest began to pressure the Mountaineers, resulting in the game-winning goal in the 72nd minute. Lucas Gimenez was just outside the box on the right side and sent a cross to the back post, right to the head of Sam Fink for the winner.
WVU drops to 2-2 for the season and took six shots, while Wake Forest improved to 3-0, taking nine shots. The Demon Deacons also held the corner kick advantage at 5-3.
Senior midfielder Shadow Sebele
led WVU with three shots, while freshman defender Nick Raskasky
Sebele initially had the best chance of the match only seven minutes in when he blasted a free kick that went just right of the net. Sebele had another opportunity in the 29th minute with a breakaway down the right side that Wake Forest goalkeeper Michael Lisch corralled after Sebele’s first touch.
Raskasky started an opportunity in the 18th minute when he sent a cross to senior midfielder Travis Pittman
in the center of the field. Pittman was unable to gain enough control to get a shot off.
The chances for WVU continued in the second half as Sebele rocketed a left-footed shot just wide left from 25 yards out in the 50th minute.
The Demon Deacons appeared to score a goal in the 60th minute off a header by Chris Duvall on a free kick, but Duvall was offside on the play.
Less than a minute later, sophomore forward Andy Bevin
continued the WVU pressure as he intercepted a pass from Wake Forest’s Lisch, and sent a pass to Sebele, but it was blocked by a Wake Forest defender.
The Mountaineers return home briefly before hitting the road for a match at Penn State on Thursday, Sept. 6, at 7 p.m. The Nittany Lions have a record of 3-1 after falling at No. 21 Georgetown earlier Sunday afternoon.