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Men’s soccer drops season opener at Juniata

Matt Rush  |  Photo by Jace Delgado
Matt Rush | Photo by Jace Delgado

HUNTINGDON, Pa. – A pair of first-half goals from Jarrod Gibson and Blake Cassel helped Juniata secure a 2-0 victory over Denison to open the season on Friday night at Gibbel Stadium.

Despite the Big Red owning an early 3-1 shot advantage to open the game, the Eagles fired back with four-consecutive shots in less than four minutes of play, including the first goal of the match from Gibson who accepted a pass from Michael Realbuto and gave Juniata the early 1-0 lead.

Following Cassel's goal in the 36th minute, Denison looked to score before halftime, but Andrew Goldsholle's shot was saved by Juniata's keeper Andrew Yeich. DU trailed 2-0 entering the break.

In the second half, the Big Red outshot the Eagles 6-5 and kept possession in the opening minutes on three-straight corner kicks from seniors Ryan Albers and Matt Rush.

Still trailing 2-0 in the 63rd minute, freshman Lorenz Hoover connected on a shot in the back of the net for the first goal of his career and to cut the Denison deficit to one, 2-1.

With 27:15 remaining in the match, freshmen Luca Vicinelli and Pierre de la Croix-Vaubois attempted back-to-back shots, but the Big Red was unable to post the equalizer as they dropped their first match of the season.

Along with his first-career goal, Hoover tied for the team-lead with two shots and one on goal. Rush and Vicinelli also tallied two shots each for the game. Juniata's Cassel and Wyatt Page led the match with three shots each while Cassel also added three shots on goal.

Yeich finished the day with four saves in 90 minutes of action to earn the win while DU's Dylan Brown and Colin Cramer combined for four saves in a full match effort.

Denison will stay on the road this Saturday, August 31 when they travel to Penn State-Altoona for a 2 p.m. kickoff with the Lions.