Courtesy Vermont Sports Information
DURHAM, N.C. – The University of Vermont men’s soccer team opened the 2018 campaign with a 2-0 win over Elon Friday night at Koskinen Stadium in the opening game of the 2018 John Rennie Nike Invitational on the campus of Duke University. The Catamounts start the season with a 1-0-0 record while the Phoenix fall to 0-1-0.
“Tonight’s game was a very tough situation to be in, on the road and playing 70 minutes down a man,” head coach Rob Dow said. “We started the game slow but responded very well to adversity. The boys showed they were willing to sacrifice for the result and they deserved the win.”
HOW IT HAPPENED
Aron Runarsson was sent off in the 20th minute after an aggressive challenge on Hassan Pinto just outside the 18-yard box. Redshirt sophomore Clay Thomas (1 save) replaced the reigning America East Goalkeeper of the Year in net and Danny Orrego was taken out.
Jon Bryant opened the scoring in the 25th minute after an initial attempt from Jon Arnar Barddal was blocked. Bryant turned the rebound through traffic and found the bottom left corner in his Catamount debut.
Protecting their one-goal lead in the second half the Catamounts limited the Phoenix to six shots, including none on goal.
In the 87th minute Arnar Barðdal was on the end of a perfectly weighted through ball from Trevor Colazzo and fired a shot that beat the Elon goalkeeper Matthew Jegier (1 save) but caromed off the left post and out.
Just minutes later the Catamounts took advantage of a Jegier error to put the game away. Under pressure in the 89th minute Jegier tried to pass the ball up the field but it deflected off Justin Freitas’ shin and in.
With tonight’s victory over the Phoenix the Catamounts have won their last nine season opening games.
With the victory, the Cats Win, Community Wins campaign and Vermont Mutual Insurance Group will donate another $100 to the Boys and Girls Club of Burlington, bringing this year’s total to 60 wins and $6,000.
On Sunday (Aug. 26) Vermont will face No. 10 Duke in the final game of the 2018 John Rennie Nike Invitational at 2:30 p.m. The game will be broadcast via ACC Network Extra which is available on the WatchESPN app and WatchESPN.com. Fans must login with their television provider and subscribe to ESPN to watch the game.