Webster University’s men’s soccer team defeated McMurry State in a 3-2 match Saturday night to win their first match of the season.
The Gorloks got off to a 1-0 lead late in the first half on a goal by sophomore Zach Gyuricza. Gyuricza was assisted by forward Alex Whalen.
In the fifty-third minute, the Gorloks extended their lead to 2-0 with a Brendan Shields goal set up by Juan Garcia. It was Shield’s first goal of the season.
The eventual game-winning goal was scored in the seventy-second minute. Senior Angel Jasso gave the Gorloks a 3-0 lead. Jasso had only one goal last season.
Head Coach Mike Siener said the offense had a good game, and it took a team effort to defeat McMurry State.
“The first half was trying to figure ourselves out a little bit,” Siener said. “Once we got settled in, we were fine. Anytime that you get the first goal it relieves the pressure.”
Senior goalkeeper Zach Horn said the Gorloks out worked the opposing team in Saturday night’s victory.
“The build up to our goals was beautiful,” Horn said. “Especially on Angel’s goal. That was probably the prettiest team goal I have seen in my four years here.”
McMurry State started their comeback 29 seconds after Webster’s third goal. Rafael Lara scored to bring the War Hawks within two.
With only extra time left to play, Javi Mejia-Escalante score the second goal for McMurry. The War Hawks fell short of the comeback as time expired.
Freshman goaltender Eli Smith got his first start in Saturday’s game. He was credited with six saves and allowed two goals. Smith briefly left the game with leg cramps before returning later in the second half.
Siener said that Smith played well in his first start and that he was fine after the leg cramps.
“He made some great saves tonight,” Siener said. “He kind of kept us in the game there, which is great.”
Smith was named SLIAC Men’s Soccer Defensive Player of the Week for his performance against McMurry.
“They got a goal there and kind of made it interesting,” Siener said. “A little let up by us by not finishing the game, but credit them too. They made some nice plays.”
Horn said that he felt like the team is starting to get in sync after Saturday night’s win. The team had a two week training camp in preparation for the season.
“We have a lot of creative players on the team that are starting to learn how each other play,” Horn said. “Which is going to produce some really exciting soccer this year. I am surprised how quickly all the new guys have adapted. Only going to get better.”
The win against McMurry State evened up the Gorloks record for the season after an opening loss to Washington University last Thursday. Washington University is the twenty-fourth ranked team in the country.
The men’s soccer team will go on a road trip next. They face Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee Saturday, Sept. 10. Sept. 11 they will face Hendrix College in Conway, Arkansas.