Sept. 1, 2009
BALTIMORE - Villanova's Kyle Soroka struck a shot from 25-plus yards on the right side of the box and put it in the upper left corner of the net for the match's only goal, and the Wildcats defeated host Loyola, 1-0, Tuesday afternoon in front of a large season-opening crowd.
Soroka used time in the open field outside the box on the right side. His hard shot sailed right-to-left, just over the hands of an outstretched Kyle Wittman.
The score came at the 82:02 mark, and despite four shots in the remainder of the game by Loyola (0-1-0), Villanova (1-0-0) held off the 18th-ranked Greyhounds.
Loyola's student body and soccer fans turned out to build a fantastic crowd of 1,714 in the first game of the year for both teams.
The Greyhounds put early pressure on Villanova, taking four shots in the first 29 minutes.
Glenn Leitch's low rocket from the top of the box was saved by Wildcat goalkeeper Chris Bresnahan, thwarting Loyola's best chance.
Soroka nearly put Villanova on the scoreboard with just over seven minutes remaining before halftime, striking a hard shot at the near post that was saved by Wittman.
Leitch took another good chance from the top of the box in the 53rd minute, but it was blocked by a defender.
Wittman then made a pair of saves on consecutive Wildcat shots. Kevin Garcia and Matt Margiotta took shots for Villanova, but the junior goalkeeper made saves for Loyola.
After two Wildcat shots sailed wide and high, the Greyhounds garnered their best chance of the second half.
Wade McHugh drilled a shot from 20 yards out, but it slipped just over the crossbar, in the 67th minute.
Jamie Darvill then flicked a shot at the left side of the goal in the 76th minute, but Bresnahan made a diving save for Villanova.
Alex Garcev and Ankrah took shots in the waining seconds, but none were on goal.
Villanova outshot Loyola, 11-8, in the second half, 15-12 in the match. Each team received five corner kicks.
Wittman made four saves for Loyola, while Bresnahan had two for Villanova.
Loyola returns to action on Friday, September 4, when it hosts Mount St. Mary's at 2 p.m. The game is the first of a Greyhound soccer doubleheader with the women's side playing Boston University at 5 p.m.