BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Freshman Diego Navarrete and senior Babayele Sodade each recorded a pair of goals to help lead the UAB men’s soccer team to an impressive 5-1 victory over Oral Roberts on Friday night at West Campus Field. With the victory, the Blazers remain unbeaten, improving to 3-0-1 on the year.
“I thought we played very well and came out with a lot of energy, especially in the second half,” UAB head coach Mike Getman said. “We played with confidence tonight and moved the ball well which created a bunch of chances. I thought when we scored the third goal that sort of broke the game open.”
The Blazers controlled the game throughout, outshooting the Golden Eagles, 24-11, on the night, including an 11-5 advantage on corner kicks.
Navarrete was the offensive star of the contest, finishing with two goals and an assist. He also recorded game highs in shots (5) and shots on goal (3). Meanwhile, Sodade, the team’s leading scorer with four goals on the year, also recorded a pair of goals, while sophomores Chase Wickham and Alex Clay also found the back of the net.
The Blazers scored twice through the opening 45 minutes with the tallies coming just over a minute apart.
UAB’s first goal came at the 20:21 mark off the foot of Wickham, whose first career goal for the Green and Gold officially went down as the game winner. Navarrete set up Wickham when he gathered a loose ball during a scramble in front of the ORU net and left it for Wickham, who then buried the shot into the left side of the net for the one-goal lead.
Just over a minute later, at the 21:43 mark, it was Sodade’s turn. The senior scored off a direct kick from 20 yards out, which went into the far post for a 2-0 UAB advantage.
Navarrete struck for his first goal of the night at the 56:16 mark when delivered a shot from a near-impossible angle into the top of the net. Just 37 seconds later, it was Sodade’s turn as he took a pass from Joshua Stewart and ripped a shot inside the far post for a 4-0 Blazer lead.
Navarrete made it 5-0 at the 62:21 mark with a goal off an assist from Moses Adeniran, while freshman Ian Machalak’s deflection off a pass from sophomore Alex Clay gave the Blazers’ their sixth tally of the evening.
Oral Roberts’ (1-3) lone goal came at the 82:51 mark when Sid Stewart beat the UAB defense and delivered a shot into the lower far post to result I the final score.
The six goals were the most in a game by UAB since a 7-1 victory over FIU on Oct. 10, 2009.
The Blazers will next be in action on Sunday night when they host Georgia State at 6 p.m. at West Campus Field.
“Georgia State is a very good team and we know we have a tough challenge ahead of us,” Getman said. “We’ll go home, get a good night’s rest and get prepared for another tough opponent.”