Early Offense Sparks Men's Soccer Victory
Sept. 4, 2004
EAST LANSING, Mich. -
The Michigan State men's soccer team scored three first half goals in a 4-2 victory over St. Francis (Pa.) in the first day of action at the MSU/Radisson Fall Soccer Classic. Senior forward Jordan Gruber (Beverly Hills) scored his team-best third goal of the season, while also assisting on two other scores. The Spartans improve to 2-0 with the win and will face Western Illinois at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday afternoon in the second day of the MSU/Radisson Fall Soccer Classic. St. Francis falls to 0-1 with the loss.
Senior forward John Minagawa-Webster (Monroe) scored a beautiful goal in the 10th minute to open the scoring. He took a pass from Gruber in the air and rocketed it past the diving Red Flash goalkeeper. Gruber also assisted on MSU's second goal, hitting a streaking Ryan McMahen (Jr., Munster, Ind.) in the 32nd minute. Freshman forward Kenzo Webster (Monroe) scored his first goal as a Spartan at 37:46, taking an assist from Ben Pirmann (Lake Orion). In the first half, MSU outshot St. Francis, 7-1. For the game, the Spartans held a 15-4 advantage.
Less than ten minutes into the second half, Minagawa-Webster found Gruber with a perfect pass and Gruber buried it in the net to give MSU a 4-0 lead. With a comfortable lead, MSU head coach Joe Baum replaced several starters. St. Francis showed some fight with two second-half goals, but never really threatened.
"This was our first home game of the year, and I thought we came out ready to play with a lot of energy and jump in our legs," said Baum. "We had just seven shots in the first half, but we were able to score on three of those opportunities. It was also nice that we were able to rest some players in the second half. We'll need them tomorrow against a talented Western Illinois team."
Sophomore Jason Tillman (Brighton) started in goal for the Spartans. He did not allow a goal in the first half, but was not required to make a save. Freshman Chris Austin (Livonia) allowed two second half goals in 45 minutes of action.
In the first game of the day at the MSU/Radisson Fall Soccer Classic, Michigan got a goal from Mychal Turpin in the first overtime period to defeat Western Illinois, 1-0. The Wolverines will play St. Francis at 1:15 on Sunday afternoon, preceding MSU's contest.
Team 1 2 Total SFU 0 2 2 MSU 3 1 4 Scoring Summary 1. 9:44 (MSU) Minagawa-Webster (Gruber) 2. 31:01 (MSU) McMahen (Gruber) 3. 37:46 (MSU) Webster (Pirmann) 4. 55:35 (MSU) Gruber (Minagawa-Webster) 5. 66:46 (SFU) Showers (Luetzen) 6. 80:31 (SFU) Stephens (unassisted)
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