Utah Valley men’s soccer ended the homecoming week here in Orem by beginning WAC play on Saturday night, Sept. 28. The Wolverines hosted the Huskies of Houston Baptist University. UVU controlled the match from the opening minutes, ultimately winning by a score of 3-0.
“For us this was a massive game, we’re fortunate this year with the (WAC) schedule that we have six of eleven home games,” said UVU head coach Greg Maas. “So for us we got to take every one of those to heart and this was the most important game we’ve played and the next ones the next.”
Going into the match, UVU led the all-time series between them and the Huskies at 3-2. The Huskies, however, snapped a two-match losing streak last season in Houston. In the series, each of the five total matches have been won by the home team.
The Wolverines came out of the gates gunning on the attack. This attack caused a penalty in the box in the 13th minute, resulting in a penalty kick. Senior forward Blake Frischknecht took the kick, but couldn’t fool the keeper as it was a clean save by junior Jorge Guzman.
A mere eight minutes later another penalty occurred in the box in favor of UVU. This time senior midfielder Luis Vargas took the penalty kick, and struck it right at the keeper and into the back of the net to put the Wolverines up 1-0.
There was a lot of aggressive play by both sides in the first half, with each side collecting a yellow card to go along with five plus fouls apiece.
UVU would tally one more goal just before the half in the 42nd minute. Sophomore forward Zahir Vazquez lined a frozen rope, 12-6 curveball of a kick, stunning Guzman and finding the back of the net in a hurry. The goal was Vazquez’s first this season.
With limited action coming from HBU’s offense in the second half because of stout UVU defensive play, all eyes were on Frischknecht and the Wolverine offense. As Frischknecht tacked on a goal in the 58th minute to push the score to 3-0. That goal put him back in a tie for the WAC lead in goals scored with five. Frischknecht now has four goals in his last four games.
“We had a tremendous crowd tonight on homecoming for both the women’s game and the men’s game tonight,” said Maas. “I was really excited, obviously they gave us a lot of energy and our guys love to play here on Clyde Field in front of our den.”
The Wolverines are now 1-0 to begin WAC play after the victory. They now head out on the road for the next two games, both in Texas. The first match will be against UT Rio Grande Valley on Friday, Oct. 4 at 6 p.m. MST. They will then face University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio on Sunday, Oct. 6 at 1 p.m. MST.