Early Lead Propels U of R Men's Soccer Over Cal Lutheran, 3-2

Ethan Kovach dribbling.
Photo Credit: Sam Keary

The University of Redlands soccer team traveled to Cal Lutheran University on Saturday afternoon for a Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) matchup in Thousand Oaks. The Bulldogs jumped to an early lead, scoring three goals in just 12 minutes and held on defensively to take home a solid, 3-2, road win.

The Maroon and Gray controlled the game early, earning three corner kicks in the first three minutes. On sophomore forward Steve Acuña's (Pico Rivera, CA) third corner, he linked up with sophomore defender Peyton Menti (Seattle, WA) who chested the ball in for the score in the fifth minute.

Just under two minutes later, first-year forward Ethan Kovach (Las Vegas, NV) worked his way down the field and sent the ball across the box. Acuña connected with a diving header to go up 2-0.

Kovach attempted two more shots in the ensuing minutes, but one was blocked and the other was saved by the CLU keeper.

In the 12th minute, junior midfielder Collin ChubbFertal (Eugene, OR) slipped a pass into the box to find junior midfielder Derrin Valeri (Atlanta, GA). From there Valeri redirected the ball past the diving Kingsmen keeper for a 3-0 Bulldog lead early in the game.

The Kingsmen netted a score in the 39th minute to cut the deficit to 1-3.

Although play became more physical with multiple fouls near midfield, the Bulldogs' attempts remained accurate as four out of five of Redlands' second-half shots were on target. Unfortunately, the CLU goalkeeper came up with all the stops.

The Kingsmen stepped up the pressure putting another through the posts in the 74th minute to close the gap to just one.

Although CLU earned four corner kicks in the final 15 minutes of the game, Redlands defense stepped up in a big way to clear the ball each time, not allowing Cal Lutheran another shot on goal.

First-year goalkeeper Adrian Muñoz (Pasadena, CA) made four saves in the game to secure the 3-2 victory.

Redlands (5-4-2, 5-2-1 SCIAC) heads to Northern California to take on the UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs in non-conference action on Wednesday, October 16, at 2 p.m.