INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- The No. 19-ranked SVSU Men's Soccer program got the 2019 season off on the right track on Friday night, defeating the McKendree Bearcats by a 2-0 score in regional action. The Cardinals got a goal and an assist from senior Connor Rutz to help pace the scoring attack, along with a goal from Owen Marshall.
The opening half went scoreless, as Saginaw Valley recorded three shots in the frame while McKendree had two. In the corner kicks category, The Bearcats had three while the Cardinals had two.
It wasn't until the 63rd minute of the match where the ice was broken, as senior midfielder Rutz drilled-in a goal in the top corner off a free kick, giving the Cardinals a 1-0 edge.
That score grew to a 2-0 lead in the 74th minute, with Rutz setting up Owen Marshall for a goal to give SVSU another goal cushion over the Bearcats.
Each team had four shots in the final half as SV posted a 7-6 advantage overall in the match.
Marshall's goal was the first of his career while Rutz had his first this season and eighth of his SVSU career.
Mason Maziasz (1-0-0) picked up his first career victory in his first action in net. He faced three shots on goal, turning away all of them.
It marks the first career collegiate head coaching victory for Louis Barrow, who shared his thoughts on the victory below.
From Head Coach Louis Barrow...
"The lads competed with a fantastic attitude tonight. We put out a very mature performance. The older players led by example and we showed a lot of grit to not concede and some composure to eventually go and get a goal. McKendree is a very industrious team with some top players that really pushed us to the limit. Fortunately, a couple of magic moments won us the game!"
Saginaw Valley continues regional action on Sunday, facing the University of Indianapolis in a 2:30 p.m. match. You can follow the action live at svsucardinals.com.
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