ST. GEORGE – The Dixie State men’s soccer team extended its regular season winning streak to 20 games and conference winning streak to 14 games with a 1-0 win over Chaminade in DSU’s home opener at Legend Solar Stadium Thursday night.
“Our defender prevented their player from spinning towards the goal and in the process knocked him down,” Dixie State head coach Jonny Broadhead said. “It was definitely a penalty.”
Goalkeeper Zach Nielson lined up against Chaminade’s Tyler Ebisuya. At the moment of the kick, Nielson broke right and was able to prevent the goal.
“Coach (Brad) Trella told us before the kick that Zach had it,” said Broadhead. “I am not sure if that confidence just carries through to his goalies or not, but Zach looked pretty determined when he lined up to face the kick.”
Nielson may have appeared cool on the outside but to hear him talk about the penalty kick that may have been a façade.
“Four minutes into the game and I was already facing a penalty kick,” said Nielson. “I was super nervous. I did not get a read on the player. I just decided to pick a side. I picked right.”
Seven minutes later, Dixie State scored the game’s only goal. Jandir Porta got his first of the season. Blazer defender Angel Estrada dribbled up the right side, slipped a pass to Moises Medina on the right side. Medina quickly gave the pass back and Estrada found Porta coming across from the left side. Porta continued across the goal and then kicked the ball to the left for pay dirt.
“It was a quality goal,” Broadhead said. “Three players set up a good scoring opportunity. That goal was big as we did not cash in on later opportunities.”
Defenses for both teams limited shots for the game. Other than the penalty kick, the Trailblazers did not allow any other shots on frame. Dixie State outshot Chaminade 11-5 and shots on goal 3-1.
Dixie State improves to 5-0 overall and 1-0 in the PacWest. Chaminade falls to 1-2 overall and 0-1. The Trailblazers will host Biola University Saturday at 12:30 p.m.
Dixie State 5, Chaminade 1
The Dixie State women’s soccer team opened up conference play with a 5-1 victory over visiting Chaminade. PacWest preseason Player of the Year Darian Murdock got her second hat trick of the season and Jamie Iurato had the other two goals.
“Our forwards had a really good night tonight,” Dixie State head coach Kacey Bingham said. “Our team played extremely well in the first half to get to a 4-0 lead. We decided to get several players some playing time in the second half, so we were not as cohesive as we played in the first.”
DSU quickly scored to start the match. Less that two minutes in, Iurato took a center pass from Brooklyn Vogelsberg and scored inside the six-yard box.
Twenty minutes later, Murdock got her first goal. Montana Hadley dribbled up the right side and drilled a pass to Murdock, who headed in the goal for the 2-0 lead.
“Montana is a great passer,” Murdock said. “She can read defenses well and is good at putting the ball at the right spot.”
It did not take long before DSU got another goal. Iurato got her second off an assist from Kamie Hunter.
“I got the defender behind me,” said Iurato. “Kamie threaded the needle and got it to me between my defender and the goalie. I was able to collect the pass with my right and quickly score it with my left about eight yards out.”
The Trailblazers last goal before halftime came at the 39:56 mark. Murdock took a pass from Kelsey Cook into the center of the penalty box and slid it past the goalie for the 4-0 halftime lead.
The Silverswords got their only goal of the match 17 minutes into the second half. Bianca Gonzales battled her defender one-on-one and then got it past the goalkeeper.
Two minutes later, Murdock completed the hat trick when she dribbled the ball and created her own shot 25 yards from goal.
As a team, Dixie State outshot Chaminade 27-8 and 15-6 on goal. Twenty-five players saw the field for Dixie State.
DSU improves to 5-1 overall and 1-0 in the PacWest. Chaminade falls to 1-3 overall and 0-1 in the PacWest. The Trailblazers will host Biola in another PacWest matchup this Saturday at 10 a.m. Biola will come to St. George with a 4-0 record.
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