No. 1 Wake Forest Scores Five Second Half Goals in 6-2 Victory
Sept. 22, 2008
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - No. 1 Wake Forest (6-0-0, 1-0-0 ACC) scored five consecutive goals to erase an early lead from No. 24 UC Santa Barbara (4-3-0, 0-0-0 Big West) as the Deacons cruised to a 6-2 victory on Sunday night at Harder Stadium. Six different players scored for Wake Forest in the contest between the last two national champions in men's college soccer.
"It was a great crowd and great atmosphere tonight," head coach Jay Vidovich said. "We were disappointed in giving up an early goal, but our reaction to it was excellent. We got a crucial goal late in the first half that gave us some momentum in the second half. We played great attacking soccer in the second half and every player that played in the game made a positive contribution."
Wake Forest had several quality scoring chances, taking 22 shots in the game, including 13 shots on goal. The Gauchos had 11 shots, with five shots on goal.
Sophomore midfielder Corben Bone and senior forward Marcus Tracy were the offensive stars of the night for Wake Forest, with each player scoring a goal and adding two assists. Bone scored the equalizing goal late in the first half and added two second half assists, while Tracy assisted on Bone's goal and also assisted on the game-winning goal from Sam Cronin. Tracy added a goal of his own later in the second half.
The victory for Wake Forest matches the longest winning streak in school history at 11 games. The Deacons last lost a game on November 18, 2007, falling to Boston College 2-1 in the championship game of the ACC Tournament. Wake also won 11 games in a row in the 2003 season, from October 4 until November 12.
The Deacons also extended an impressive unbeaten streak against non-conference opponents. Wake is now unbeaten in its last 33 games against non-ACC foes, including a 5-0 record against non-conference opponents in 2008.
UCSB jumped on top early, scoring in the second minute. Nick Perera fired a shot from 10 yards out on the right side of the box that found the upper right side of the net to give the Gauchos an early 1-0 advantage. Bryan Dominguez was credited with the assist on the play. The goal broke Akira Fitzgerald's scoreless streak, which lasted 401:59.
Wake Forest evened the game late in the first half, as Bone scored his second goal of the season with 48 seconds left in the half. Tracy passed the ball to the left side of the field and Bone blasted a shot that found the far right side of the net to even the score at one.
The Deacons took their first lead of the game early in the second half, scoring in the 50th minute. Bone crossed the ball from the left side of the field. Sophomore defender Ike Opara headed the ball into the net from seven yards out to give Wake the lead.
Senior midfielder Sam Cronin extended the lead to 3-1 with a goal in the 57th minute. Tracy passed the ball to Cronin, who fired a shot from 12 yards out in the center of the box, to beat the diving UCSB goalkeeper. The goal for Cronin was his second of the season, while Tracy added his second assist of the game and third of the season.
Tracy scored his sixth goal in as many games in the 67th minute to push the Wake Forest advantage to 4-1. With a three-on-one advantage, Bone played a pass to Tracy and his shot from the center of the box found the back of the net to give the Deacons their fourth goal of the game.
Freshman Luke Norman scored the first goal of his collegiate career at the 68:59 mark to give Wake a 5-1 lead. Norman attempted a shot from 15 yards out that beat the Gaucho goalkeeper.
UCSB's Chris Pontius cut the lead to 5-2 in the 78th minute. Off a free kick from the center of the field, Pontius found the back of the net to cut the Deacon lead to three.
Freshman Sam Redmond closed out the scoring in the game in the 87th minute with his first goal as a Demon Deacon. Zack Schilawski played a pass to Redmond, who fired a shot from the right side of the box and into the back of the net.
The Deacons return to action on Wednesday, hosting Appalachian State at Spry Stadium. Opening kickoff is set for 7 p.m. (ET).