Aug. 31, 2014
Box Score | Highlights | Coach Roberts' postgame comments
BOSTON - Playing in a consistent downpour for much of the game, the Boston University men's soccer team used a late header by sophomore Felix De Bona and two saves to defeat Iona, 1-0, on Sunday night at Nickerson Field. With senior Nick Thomson's second shutout, the Terriers open a season 2-0-0 for the first time since 2001, as the Gaels (0-1-1) suffer their first defeat of the year.
The Terriers dominated possession for much of the contest, finishing with a 25-9 advantage in shots and 13-3 lead in corner kicks. However, the rain started the game as a weak drizzle and only got worse as the game continued, eventually resulting in a 15-minute rain delay at 71:12.
When the players returned, the rain had dissipated, and the drainage system had rid the field of the large puddles. BU just needed three minutes following the delay to get on the board.
Following an Iona foul, freshman Bjarki Benediktsson curled a free kick from 30 yards near the sideline toward the box. De Bona ran past his defender unchecked at the net and headed in the ball toward the near post, as Julian Petrello dove unsuccessfully with his arms stretched out.
The Gaels tried to find the equalizer and pressured the Terriers in the final minutes with the gift of two BU fouls. However, the backline anchored by senior Kelvin Madzongwe only allowed one shot attempt in the final 15 minutes of the contest to secure the shutout.
Iona's best opportunity to score came in the 18th minute when the Gaels went on a counter attack off a BU corner kick and placed the ball in the left side of the box. Iona eventually found MAAC Preseason Player of the Year Ignacio Maganto, who finished with a team-high seven shot attempts.
Pressured by BU defenders, he quickly fired toward the right post, but Thomson moved up and used his legs to block the shot for his lone save of the game.
Madzongwe had the second in the 53rd minute when he cleared away a wild shot from Willya Mekolo that was headed toward the far post during another counter attack.
Petrello stopped five of the Terriers' shots, including three from senior Dominique Badji who had a game-high nine attempts in the game. Badji almost put BU on the board in the sixth minute, but his hard shot nailed the left post.
Following a two-game homestand, the Terriers will hit the road for the first time and visit Siena on Wednesday (Sept. 3) at 4 p.m.