In an aggressive game against Whittier, the University of La Verne men’s soccer team was able to step up and get the job done defeating the Poets, 3-1, last Saturday at Graham Field in Whittier.
The first goal was by Whittier in the eighth minute, which would end up being their last. The Leopards’ defense put the pressure on Whittier’s offense making it difficult to score throughout the game.
“This season the defense has kept us in the game,” coach Crescencio Gonzalez said. “They are smart and active and that’s what helps us.”
La Verne got on the board with 26:45 minutes left in the first half when
Daniel Aguirre was able to receive a pass from Andrew Dorsey and maneuver through two Whittier players to score.
During the first half, ULV had a lot of nice long balls down the field but were not finishing the plays.
ULV had many scoring opportunities, considering the ball was in Whittier territory most of the game.
“Our mid-field is coming alive and our striker is improving little by little,” Gonzalez said.
With Andrew Tillehkooh, Eddy Geenen, Jesse Rodriguez and Eric Gomez pushing the defense almost to the top of the midfield circle, La Verne was able to keep control for most of the game.
“We have great defense, but when we get to the goal we need to put them away,” midfielder Daniel Aguirre said.
Francisco “Kiko” Escobbedo, Edgar Manzo, Daniel Aguirre and Ruben Trujillo all made a continuous attempt to get the ball in the net. Good shot attempts were available but none were converted.
“A lot of the time we build up really well and our passing is good, but we need to put the ball away,” defender Matt Dominguez said.
?La Verne had excellent ball control along with good passing skills, but it came down to the team just needing to settle down and play their game.
Both teams played an aggressive game, but La Verne was able to outplay Whittier.
In the second half, Whittier was still trying to find their place in the game.
They were able to get a few shots off at the goal but ULV goalie Cody Black successfully stopped all shot attempts.
In the 65th minute, Manzo scored, giving La Verne a 2-1 lead.
While Whittier became desperate, La Verne kept excellent possession of the ball.
Manzo scored 19 minutes later for his second goal of the game and put ULV on top, 3-1.
ULV improved to 6-4-2 overall and 4-1-2 in conference, good enough for third in SCIAC.
The Leopards will face Caltech at 7 p.m. tomorrow at Ben Hines Field.
Lindsey Gooding can be reached at email@example.com.