Three goals in the first 37 minutes of the match proved to be all the offense Valparaiso would need on Friday evening at Eastgate Field as the Crusaders defeated IPFW 3-0 to pick up their first victory of the 2007 season.
Tyler Pagano (Mundelein, Ill./Mundelein H.S.) collected a loose ball in the penalty area after Adrian Ortiz (Berwyn, Ill./Morton West H.S.) sent a corner kick into the middle and beat goalkeeper Josh Howell for his first goal of the season just 10:36 into the match.
Oscar Lomeli (Jalisco, Mexico) made it 2-0 Crusaders eight minutes later picking up a rebound from a Yuuki Guzman (Tokyo, Japan/Seoul Foreign H.S., Korea) shot. Guzman then added a goal of his own in the 37th minute, scoring from 18 yards out after playing a ball off of the foot of Ortiz.
Valpo went into intermission with an 8-5 shot advantage, including a 6-1 edge on goal.
Neither team would find the back of the net in the second half as the Crusaders went on to earn the victory.
“It is great to win a game in our first home match,” head coach Mike Avery said. Avery earned his first victory at the helm of the Crusaders as well on the afternoon. “It’s important to us to establish home-field advantage. We came out with pretty good energy, and tried to establish the fact that Eastgate is ours, and did a very good job of it.”
Valpo finished with a 13-12 shot advantage for the match but the Mastodons had a 6-2 edge on corner kick opportunities.
Sean McGinnis (Chicago, Ill./Barrington H.S.) earned the shutout victory for the Crusaders, the third of his career, making three saves. Howell made five stops for IPFW (1-2).
Valparaiso (1-2) will head to Evansville on Sunday afternoon to battle the Purple Aces. Action on the pitch is slated to kick off at 3 p.m. CDT.