Nov. 8, 2008
Lawrenceville, N.J. - Wade McHugh scored two goals and Jamie Darvill added a pair of assists as the sixth-ranked Greyhounds finished off a perfect regular season on Saturday with a 5-nil win at Rider, giving Loyola its first unbeaten regular-season in 22 years.
Not since the 1986 Loyola team went 15-0-4 in regular season play had a team from Evergreen gone unscathed in league play. No longer though, as Loyola finished off a perfect regular-season by matching their season-high with five goals, all of them coming in the first half.
The Greyhounds (17-0-1, 9-0 MAAC) earn a No. 1 seed in next weekend's MAAC Tournament. And for the second-straight season, Loyola claims the conference season-crown. The team carries a national-best 26 game unbeaten streak into postseason play, and remains only one of two remaining unbeatens in the country, with the other being top-ranked Wake Forest.
Loyola started the scoring 8:23 in on the first of McHugh's goals. Darvill played a cross from the left-side of the endline. The ball skipped on the turf and McHugh buried a shot from six yards out to give Loyola the early 1-nil lead.
The Greyhounds doubled up a minute later on the Broncos (2-15-2, 1-8 MAAC). Again Darvill crossed a ball into the box from the right-side of the pitch. This time Glenn Leitch was waiting in the box and he netted his shot for the 2-nil advantage.
McHugh got his second of the afternoon at the 14:47 mark. He received a ball on the right of the box and made a nice cutback toward the frame, beating his defender. McHugh then unloaded a laser that found the upper-90 in the left netting past the frozen keeper.
A Leitch header off a set-piece at the 25-minute mark nearly went in, but goalkeeper Randall Zapolski made a nice reflex save, pushing the attempt over the frame.
Phil Bannister extended the Greyhounds' lead to 4-nil at the 35:41 mark. Darvill received a through-ball from Mike Deasel that provided a breakaway attempt. He lofted a shot over the keeper that grazed the crossbar and bounced softly to the five-yard mark. A waiting Bannister was there to convert the rebound.
Defender Charlie Hutton got in on the scoring three minutes before intermission. Streaking on the left-side of the field, he received a ball and beat a Rider outside-back. He then slid a 15-yard grounder into the right-side of the net for the 5-nil Loyola advantage.Loyola outshot Rider, 16-3.
The Greyhounds now gear up for postseason play next weekend at the MAAC Tournament held in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.