By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
LA VERNE, Calif. -- Johnny DeRueda scored at 61:12 and the University of La Verne added two goals in the final 6:06 of the game, as the Leopards downed Willamette University, 3-0, on Monday, Sept. 4 at Ortmeyer Stadium. La Verne advanced its record to 2-0. Willamette slipped to 0-3.
The teams battled to a scoreless tie at halftime. The Bearcats took six shots in the firt half, including one shot on goal each from Quinn Mello-Bastida (Sr., M, San Jose, CA/Valley Christian HS/U. of Portland), Sodai Takayanagi (So., D, Morioshaki, Japan/Moriokakita) and Nicholas Ballenger (So., F, Salem, OR/West Salem HS). Mello-Bastida took the first shot of the game at 16:46 and forced La Verne's goalie, Tristan Polakowski, to make a save. Just 34 seconds later, Takayanagi also shot on target, with Polakowshi earning is second save.
La Verne produced just two shots -- one on goal -- in the first half. WU goalkeeper Marco Gonzalez-Yanez (Jr., GK, Portland, OR/Central Catholic HS/U. of Portland) registered his only save of the half at 37:33 on a shot by Ryan Adams.
Gonzalez-Yanez added another save for the Bearcats at 53:25 on a shot by Christopher Wong. The Leopards put their first point on the scoreboard just under eight minutes later when DeRueda sent the ball into the net.
With Willamette pressing forward to equalize the score, La Verne was able to tack on two more goals. Won scored at 83:54 and Luis Hernandez supplied the game's final goal at 84:42. DeRueda garnered an assist on the goal by Hernandez.
Willamette was credited with an 11-9 margin in total shots, but the Leopards gained a 6-5 edge in shots on goal. DeRueda was the top offensive threat for either team, as he scored the game's first goal and had four shots overall.
La Verne held a 5-4 lead in corner kicks. The Leopards were called for 11 fouls and Willamette received 10 fouls. Gonzalez-Yanez finished with three saves for Willamette. Polakowski provided La Verne with three saves over the first 58:39 of the game. Rene Gonzalez played in goal for the Leopards over the final 31:21 and registered two saves, while recording the win.
The Bearcats will play their regular season home opener on Sunday, Sept. 10 against University of California, Santa Cruz. Game time at Sparks Field is set for 7 p.m. (PDT).