Michigan State Downs Oregon State, 1-0
Sep 6, 2013
EAST LANSING, Mich. - The No. 21 Michigan State men's soccer team defeated No. 28 Oregon State, 1-0 on Friday at DeMartin Stadium. Ryan Thelen scored his first career goal off his seventh corner kick on the night. The Spartans are now 2-0-0 on the season, while the Oregon State owns a 2-1-0 record.
"It's great to get a second shut out," said head coach Damon Rensing. "I was happy with the fact that we not only had the possession, but we created chances. That's the combination that we're looking for. I thought we executed the indirect kick very well today. They were trying to lull us to sleep a little bit, sitting deep. We were just a little bit off. We wanted to be cautious because Oregon State is very dangerous off the counter. We didn't want to casual and we just had to keep plugging away. To their credit, they created some chances against us. To our goalie's credit and our defense, they hung in there."
A defensive stronghold from both teams kept what would have been several chances out of the goal on either side of the field. With a close opportunity for the Spartans, a cross from the far post from Andrew Herr set up a dangerous shot just wide of the goal from Brent McIntosh. The Beavers only shot on goal in the first half was deflected by Ryan Keener for a grab by keeper Zach Bennett.
A total of six corner kicks from MSU created several opportunities catching the Oregon State goalkeeper off line, but the Beaver defense kept the game scoreless. The Spartans concluded the first half with eight shots to Oregon State's three.
Michigan State came out aggressive to open up the second half as McIntosh got another shot on goal that was saved by the Beaver keeper.
After a free kick from 25 yards out from Kevin Cope was just saved off the hands of the Oregon State keeper, a corner kick on the right side from Ryan Thelen flew just inside the back post to put the Spartans on the board 1-0 in the 59th minute. It marked the first career goal for the redshirt junior.
"It feels great," said Thelen. "I finally got my first goal, so that's really nice. I sat the ball down, picked my head up and saw the goalie was a little bit off the line. To be honest, I got pretty lucky just to sneak it in there."
With another chance, Fatai Alashe made a great run with a shot that just drifted wide from almost 30 yards out.
Just over 13 minutes left in the second half, Oregon State's Daniel Van Vleet had a header in front of the net that Bennett pushed just wide of the net.
The MSU backline put another defensive stand, keeping many Oregon State chances out of the backfield.
In goal, Zach Bennett recorded three saves to earn his second shutout of the season, the 11th of his career.
The Spartans will be back in action on Sunday, Sept. 8 as they host Valparaiso at 1 p.m. at DeMartin Stadium. Live stats are available through Gametracker on MSUSpartans.com.
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