MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The West Virginia University men’s soccer team snapped a four-game losing streak with a 4-0 win over Northern Illinois on Saturday evening at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium.
“It was a very hands-on week for me. They were forced to buy in,” coach Marlon LeBlanc says. “It was nice to see the guys really execute tonight. We really executed tonight and all of the credit goes to them, they were excellent on the evening.”
West Virginia (4-5-1, 1-1-0 MAC) junior forward Andy Bevin
scored one goal on a game-leading four shots. Bevin added two assists to complete a four-point evening.
The Mountaineers came out firing and took five shots in the first 16 minutes, with three resulting in WVU goals. It was the first time since Sept. 23 of last season against Florida Atlantic that West Virginia scored three first half goals.
Freshman Christian Diaz
notched his first career goal in the 10th minute after taking a centering pass from sophomore Majed Osman
. Bevin started the sequence with a short corner kick to Osman, who centered the ball to Diaz.
Bevin doubled the lead in the 14th minute with his team-leading fifth goal of the season. Freshman Alex Ochoa
played a throw-in to sophomore Jamie Merriam
, who passed it back to Ochoa, and Ochoa sent a cross to Bevin. Bevin knocked down the cross, spun his defender and sent a half-volley past Northern Illinois goalkeeper Andrew Glaeser.
Two minutes later sophomore Merriam scored to bring the WVU lead to 3-0. Bevin registered his fourth point of the evening as he brought the ball up the right side and slotted it to the middle of the field for an easy finish by Merriam.
Northern Illinois blasted the right post twice in the first half, once by Isaac Kannah in the 18th minute, and then once by James Stevenson in the 32nd minute off a pass from Kannah.
Sophomore Ryan Cain
had the best chances of the second half, registered two shots in the first five minutes with one-on-one opportunities against Glaeser. Cain sent one shot just wide, while rifling another shot over the frame.
Cain then cashed in during the 88th minute to score the final goal of the night after dribbling around Glaeser for an open shot on goal. Senior Craig Stephens
played a long ball out of the defensive zone that was flicked to Cain by sophomore Zak Leedom
Junior goalkeeper Lee Johnston
registered his second shutout of the season, making three saves.
WVU finished with a 21-8 advantage in shots, while the corner kicks were even at 4-4.
The five-game homestand concludes with a match against Stony Brook on Tuesday, October 8 at 7 p.m. For a video and audio stream courtesy of Kroger, visit WVUsports.com.