PREVIEW: Men’s soccer takes on West Virginia

Men%27s+soccer+takes+on+West+Virginia+on+Tuesday.+Photo+Credit%3A+David+Auth

Men’s soccer takes on West Virginia on Tuesday. Photo Credit: David Auth

By Alexis Davis, Contributor

CANONSBURG, Pa.– The RMU men’s soccer team (0-2, 0-2 Horizon) will be facing off against WVU (0-0) for the first time in program history on Tuesday. This non-conference matchup will be taking place at the SouthPointe Fieldhouse in Canonsburg. Kick-off is scheduled for 1 p.m. in place of the originally scheduled IUPUI conference game.

Recapping RMU

The Colonials are headed into Tuesday’s game with a 0-2-0 overall record. RMU last took the field Wednesday, February 10 when they suffered a 2-0 loss against Cleveland State. RMU keeper Grant Glorioso kept the Vikings off the board early in the game after he blocked a pair of shots.

After struggling last week against Oakland to get shots on goal, the Colonials were able to register several in this game. Freshman Preston Rushmore gave RMU their first decent scoring chance of the game but it was ultimately swallowed up by OSU goalkeeper Omeed Naeemy. Gustaf Moberg tested Naeemy late in the first, but his shot was saved again. The opening half of the game ended scorelessly.

Early at the beginning of the second half, Bojan Kolevski was able to get past a diving Glorioso to give CSU the lead. Just over 5 minutes later, Janis Schmidt was rewarded a penalty kick after a collision in the box. Glorioso blocked the initial shot, but Schmidt scored on the rebound making it 2-0. Despite efforts from RMU, including an attempted follow up from Bryan Akongo, the Colonials were unable to get the win and fell 2-0.

SCOUTING WVU

Tuesday’s game will be the first game of the 2021 season for the Mountaineers. In the 2020 spring season, WVU was only able to play in one game before the cancellation of the season due to COVID-19. WVU faced off against UMBC on March 8th, 2020, and suffered a 1-0 loss. The Mountaineers allowed the lone goal of the game in the fourth minute. WVU ended the game with five shots on goal.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Jon Faynik (RMU) – Faynik currently leads the Colonials in shots with three. He also led the team in shots in last week’s matchup against Cleveland State. I made him a player to watch again this week because I think once he is finally able to start scoring for the Colonials, he’ll be a huge part of their offense this season.

Grant Glorioso (RMU) – The junior keeper made four saves in last week’s game against Cleveland State. So far this season he has allowed seven goals and has blocked nine shots. I think that Glorioso did a good job of shutting out the offensively stout Cleveland State. If he can continue to make important saves against WVU, he could help lead RMU to their first win of the season.

Josh DiMatteo (WVU) – The junior forward from Pittsburgh tallied four goals and an assist in 20 games. He also recorded 29 shots, including 13 on goal, in his sophomore season. He will be a player that the Colonials defense will want to shut out to get the victory.

Tony Pineda (WVU) – A junior from Statesville, North Carolina, Pineda finished his sophomore season with two goals and four assists. He tallied a total of 22 shots, including 10 on goal. The forward was able to register multiple shots in a game seven times. He will be an obstacle for the Colonials defense.

Prediction

I think that the Colonials have already improved from their first game of the season. They were able to produce more shots and allow fewer goals. I think if the Colonials can keep this up, they could get their first win of the season this Tuesday. I predict that the Colonials will get the 2-1 victory over the Mountaineers.