Jason Wright scored twice to lead Rutgers past Siena Soccer 4-2 in the season opener for both programs Friday in Piscataway, N.J. Senior midfielder Nils Weddig and junior midfielder David Itoafa scored for the Saints.
Rutgers scored twice in the first ten and a half minutes to jump out to a quick 2-0 lead. Wright finished a 2-on-1 deep in the box to open the scoring in the third minute and Mitchell Taintor followed with a penalty kick tally in the 11th minute.
But the Saints battled back and halved the score in the 19th minute. Junior Rosero sent a long pass down the left side to Weddig who dribbled into the box one-on-one, spun and fired low and inside the near left post.
However the Scarlet Knights reclaimed a commanding two-goal lead at the half, 3-1, following Wright’s second marker of the match in the 29th minute. Miles Hackett added an insurance tally in the 56th minute to cap the Rutgers scoring.
Siena too found its groove offensively in also posting a multi-goal performance in the season opener, with Itoafa capping the scoring in the 73rd minute. Junior captain Danilo Markovic sent a long free kick from the midfield circle into the box that was flicked back by sophomore striker Alexander Tejera to Itoafa who finished off the near right post.
Junior keeper Ryan Vyskocil made a career-high five saves in 66 minutes of action and sophomore newcomer Gianni Carillo did not allow a goal while making two saves in 24 minutes in goal for the Saints.
Wright (four points), Hackett (three points) and Erik Sa (two assists) all posted multi-point performances for Rutgers which held a 19-9 edge in shots and a 7-4 advantage in corner kicks. David Greczek made four saves for the Scarlet Knights.
Fresh off the program’s first-ever undefeated home season (6-0-2), the Saints return to the Capital Region to host Hartford for their home opener Tuesday at 4 p.m. at Siena Turf Field.