LYNCHBURG, VA. – Midfielder Sachem Wilson scored two goals, as the Liberty Flames rode a fast start to 4-0 victory over the IUPUI Jaguars in their home opener, Friday evening at Osborne Stadium.
Liberty jumped out to a 3-0 first half lead behind two goals from Wilson and a goal by forward Kyle Breitmeyer. Jacob Seabold tacked on another in the second half for the Flames.
The Flames registered have not allowed a goal in opening their season at 2-0. IUPUI drops to 0-1-2 on the year.
Liberty jumped on the Osborne Stadium less than four minutes into the contest. An errant clearing attempt fell in front of Wilson, who pounced on the loose ball and rocketed a shot from the top of the 18-yard box into the upper left corner of the net at the 3:12 mark. The midfielder’s first goal of the season gave the Flames a 1-0 advantage.
Continuing its offensive pressure, Liberty added to its lead during the 29th minute. After a shot by Wilson at the right post was blocked in front by a IUPUI defender, the ball bounded out to the top of the box. Flames midfielder Blessing Tahuona picked up the loose ball and pushed a pass into the center of the box, putting Breitmeyer, one-on-one with the Jaguar goalkeeper Eduard Cortes. Breitmeyer beat the goalkeeper with a shot to right side for his first goal of the year and a 2-0 Liberty edge.
Less than four minutes later, the Flames upped their cushion to 3-0, with Wilson finding the net again. The sophomore midfielder pounced on a loose clearing attempt by the Jaguars. With the goalkeeper out of the net, Wilson lifted a shot over his head into the open goal for his second marker of the evening and of the season.
At the end of the half, IUPUI gained a scoring opportunity on a corner kick. Off the kick, Kirklin Ring put a shot on net, which Liberty goalkeeper Scott Sutarik corralled for the save, sending the Flames into intermission with a 3-0 edge.
In the second half, the Jaguars had their best opportunity to break on the scoreboard during the 62nd minute. From the right side of the 18-yard box, Gregory Efiom ripped a shot, which Sutarik punch over the goal for a save.
Liberty added its final tally of the night during the 83rd minute. Wilson sent a crossing pass from the left side of the field into the box at the near post. Midfielder Jacob Seabold took it in stride and blasted a shot into the upper left corner of the net for his first collegiate goal and what proved to be the final of 4-0.
Liberty outshot IUPUI, 16-10. The Jaguars held a 6-4 edge in corner kicks.
Sutarik recorded five saves on the night in posting his second straight shutout and 13th of his Liberty career. Cortes made four saves for IUPUI in the contest.
With two goals and an assist, Wilson’s five points are the most in a game for the sophomore, eclipsing his four points last season in a 2-0 Liberty win at Radford on Oct. 30.
Before the game, former Liberty men’s soccer coach and athletic hall of fame member Bill Bell was honored. Bell coached both current Liberty head coach Jeff Alder and IUPUI head coach Isang Jacob in 1988.
Liberty next takes to the road for three consecutive games, starting next Wednesday when the Flames travel to Spartanburg, S.C., for a match with the Wofford Terriers. Match time is scheduled for 4 p.m.