Rebels Ground Redhawks
Oct. 5, 2012
LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - Three different players scored and UNLV used its best defensive effort of the season to claim a 3-0 victory over Seattle in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation men's soccer contest on Friday night from Peter Johann Memorial Field. With their first shutout of the season, the Rebels improved 3-8-1 overall, 1-1 in the league, while the Redhawks dropped to 2-6-1, 0-1-1 in the MPSF.
"We had talked this week about how important it was to get a shutout, we tried a different formation tonight, and just played outstanding team defense," said UNLV head coach Rich Ryerson. "The whole back line played great, (goalkeeper) Joe Vitale had a good game and made the stops he needed to, it was just a great team effort."
Seattle came out with a burst of energy to start, and took the only shot of the first 10 minutes. After that it was all Rebels, who would outshoot SU 7-1 for the rest of the half, and 12-6 in the second half for a 19-8 overall edge.
UNLV would also take advantage of two fouls in the first half to score goals on set plays. The first came following a foul in the 21st minute, giving UNLV the ball 30 yards out. Sophomore Julian Portugal took the free kick, and send a blast into the back of the net for the score, his fourth in the past five games. The Rebels added to the lead in the 37th minute, this time on a free kick from 20 yards out after Nick Marshall was fouled on a drive. Senior Mike Mota took this kick, and curved a shot to the left post for his first score of the season, and 2-0 UNLV lead.
Sophomore Salvador Bernal closed out the scoring in the 50th minute. Jonny Espinoza set up the play by serving up a high pass, while Bernal ran past the defense before chesting the ball down to his feet. Bernal dribbled 10 yards on the right side and unleashed a hard shot to the right post for the goal, his third of the season.
Vitale posted three saves in goal for UNLV to earn his first career shutout. Jake Feener finished with five saves for the Redhawks. Both teams took two corner kicks each.
UNLV returns to action on Sunday, hosting San Jose State at 1 pm. Tickets for the contest are 2 for 1, while kids 12 and under are always free to UNLV soccer games.