No. 1 Wake Forest Completes Undefeated Regular Season with 2-0 Win at Virginia
Nov. 7, 2008
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - No. 1 Wake Forest (17-0-1, 7-0-1 ACC) scored two goals in the first 20 minutes of the game to defeat Virginia (9-7-1, 4-4-0 ACC) 2-0 on Friday night at Klockner Stadium. The victory gives the Deacons their first unbeaten regular season in program history.
Wake Forest extends its unbeaten streak to 23 games, dating back to last season. The 23-game unbeaten streak is the longest in program history.
Senior midfielder Sam Cronin led the way offensively for the Demon Deacons, registering three points in the game. Cronin netted his seventh goal of the season and assisted on Cody Arnoux's game-winning goal.
Wake Forest continued its offensive barrage this season, bringing its goal total to 62 goals, including 32 in ACC play. The 32 goals ranks as the most ever in conference play by Wake Forest and the Deacs are eight goals shy of tying for the most goals in a season in program history. In contrast, Wake Forest has only allowed 12 goals on the season, posting a goal differential of a staggering 50 goals.
The Deacons out shot Virginia 14-9, including an 8-1 advantage in shots on goal. The Cavaliers had eight corner kicks, compared to five for Wake Forest.
Junior goalkeeper Akira Fitzgerald recorded his 11th shutout of the season. Fitzgerald made one save in the game en route to recording his 17th win on the season. Virginia goalkeeper Michael Giallombardo stayed busy in net all game, making six saves.
Wake Forest struck quickly in the game, scoring in the sixth minute. Cronin played a cross from the right side of the field. The ball found a diving Arnoux, who headed the ball into the right side of the net for his team-leading 14th goal of the season.
Virginia had its first scoring chance of the game in the 15th minute. Jonathan Villanueva had a shot attempt from just outside the six-yard box, but the attempt sailed wide.
The Deacons added on to their lead 15:50 into the game. Cronin collected a loose ball and fired a shot from just outside the 18-yard box that went inside the left post for his seventh goal of the season.
Marcus Tracy nearly extended the lead to three with a header in the 32nd minute. Evan Brown played a cross from the right side of the field. Tracy got a head on the ball from seven yards out but Virginia goalkeeper Michael Giallombardo made a leaping save.
Tracy again narrowly missed a goal in the 38th minute. Tracy had a one-on-one opportunity with the goalkeeper but Giallombardo deflected Tracy's shot over the net for a corner kick.
Arnoux just missed his second goal of the evening in the 51st minute. Arnoux's long shot from outside the penalty area hit off the crossbar and went out of bounds.
Virginia almost cut the Wake Forest lead in half 54:09 into the game. Ross LaBauex had a shot from six yards out in front of the net, but his sliding shot sailed well high of the goal.
The Cavaliers attempted a late rally, but were unable to dent the scoreboard. Neil Barlow had a shot in the 89th minute that hit off the right post and was cleared away by the Demon Deacon defense.
Wake Forest opens postseason play on Wednesday in the quarterfinals of the 2008 ACC Men's Soccer Tournament in Cary, N.C. The Deacs' will play the winner of the first round game between the eighth and ninth seeds. Game time for Wednesday's quarterfinal will be announced on Monday.