BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The No. 13 UAB men’s soccer team (9-2-1, 3-2-1) recorded a 1-0 victory against Conference USA foe FIU (5-7-0, 1-3-0) on Wednesday night at West Campus Field. With the win, UAB head coach Mike Getman collected his 90th Conference USA victory in his coaching career, the top mark in conference history.
“Everybody has talked all year about how many goals we score and how we are the top attacking team in the country,” said Getman. “People have forgot we are a very good defensive team. Tonight, the defense carried us. We scored one great goal and then defended really well for 90 minutes.”
The Blazers shut down the potent FIU attack, which ranked 16th in the nation in scoring offense, averaging 2.09 goals per game. Senior goalkeeper Raphael Ville collected his fourth clean sheet of 2013, behind five saves. That matched the most he has saved in a single game this season.
In the first 45 minutes of play, FIU was on the attack. The UAB defense kept the visiting Panthers in check. Ville came up with three stops in the opening frame, keeping FIU off the board.
Out of the break, UAB pushed ahead and scored the first goal of the match. Sophomore forward Freddy Ruiz chipped a ball to streaking redshirt junior midfielder Alex Clay. Clay collected the pass and placed it in the upper right corner to give the host Blazers a 1-0 advantage in the 48th minute.
The Blazers’ defense preserved the victory, not allowing the Panthers to get the equalizer in the remaining 45 minutes. Ville and his backline of senior Moses Adeniran, junior Darion Copeland, sophomore Ian Svantesson, and redshirt senior Chase Wickham preserved the shutout, the team’s fifth of 2013.
“It’s what we expect,” commented Getman. “It’s what this team has done all year. They call it the beautiful game. It’s not always so beautiful. We scored one beautiful goal and did a lot of hard work tonight. That’s what wins matches.”
UAB returns to the pitch on Saturday, Oct. 19 when its hits the road for Tulsa. The Conference USA matchup is slated to begin at 7 p.m. CT.
Notes: Head coach Mike Getman recorded his 90th career Conference USA victory, the most in league history … Senior goalkeeper Raphael Ville now has 4.5 clean sheets in 2013 … Redshirt junior midfielder Alex Clay scored his fourth goal of the year, his most in a single season in his collegiate career … Sophomore forward Freddy Ruiz had an assist on the night. Ruiz now has 20 points on the year, most on the squad on the year.