DENVER – Senior striker Andre Shinyashiki (Sao Paulo, Brazil) netted his fifth hat trick of the 2018 campaign and the [10/12] University of Denver men’s soccer team’s senior class scored all five goals to clinch the program its sixth-straight Summit League regular season title after a 5-0 win over Oral Roberts on Saturday night at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium. Saturday’s multi-goal game was Shinyashiki’s ninth of the season and the 15th of his four-year career.
Top-seeded Denver will host fourth-seeded Eastern Illinois in the first of two Summit League Semifinals on Thursday afternoon in Denver. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. MT, and will be broadcast live on Altitude. Second-seeded Omaha and third-seeded Purdue Fort Wayne will meet in the second semifinal at approximately 4 p.m. MT. Saturday’s Summit League final will kickoff at 3 p.m. MT on Altitude and ESPN3.
In addition to Shinyashiki’s 25th, 26th and 27th goals of his final year in Crimson and Gold, winger Kenny Akamatsu (Niigata, Japan) and forward Eric Kronenberg (Boulder, Colo.) also found the back of the net on Saturday. The game-winning tally for Shinyashiki was his 10th of the season.
Shinyashiki opened the scoring in the 15th minute off assists from freshman Stefan DeLeone (Fort Collins, Colo.) and sophomore Jacob Stensson (Stockholm, Sweden). Stensson played a thru ball down the right to DeLeone, who let the ball go through his legs and ran it down on the right side of the box. DeLeone pulled it back to Shinyashiki in the middle of the box who finished his NCAA-leading 10th game-winner of the season to put Denver 1-0 up.
Stensson setup the second goal as well, playing a switch-ball across to the run of Akamatsu in the 30th minute, who took a couple touches before firing it by the Oral Roberts keeper from 25 yards out. The goal was the senior’s third of the campaign and the sixth of his career.
Shinyashiki’s 26th of the season found the back of the net in the 38th minute off assists from senior Moshe Perez (Shim’a, Israel) and redshirt-freshman winger Jared Jungjohann (Highlands Ranch, Colo.). Jungjohann played it do Perez down the Denver right who sent it across to the top of the box to Shinyashiki. The Denver skipper took a couple of touches and fired it into the right side of the net.
Kronenberg got his first goal of the season and his third in the last two years, after missing the two seasons after his sophomore year, in the 60th minute to put Denver 4-0 up. Shinyashiki slipped in Akamatsu down the left side of the penalty area, and the Japan native drew the goalie out before playing a pass across the box to Kronenberg who fired it into an open net for the 13th goal of his Pioneer career.
Shinyashiki capped off his hat trick with the 50th goal of his Denver career from the center of the box in the 71st minute. Stensson once again earned an assist on the play, the third of the night, his seventh of the season and the 11th of his career.
Denver honored its nine seniors on Saturday, a class that is fourth in the country in wins over the last four years.
The Pioneers improved to 19-0-3 under Franks in Summit League regular season play, and enter next week with a 9-0-1 record all-time in the Summit League Tournament.
Denver’s shutout was its ninth of the campaign.