Aug. 28, 2009

Courtesy of Wake Forest

GREENVILLE, S.C. - The Wake Forest offense exploded for three second-half goals to close the exhibition season with a 3-0 victory over Furman on Thursday night at Stone Soccer Stadium.

After struggling to mount any strong scoring chances in the first 45 minutes, the Demon Deacon offense found its footing in the second stanza and scored three times. Corben Bone started the scoring in the 48th minute, while Ike Opara added a goal in the 64th minute and Chris Estridge scored in the 73rd minute.

The Demon Deacons easily out-shot Furman, holding a 15-3 advantage, including a 10-1 edge in the second half. Wake had three corner kicks, compared to two for the Paladins.

Along with the three different goal scorers, the Deacs also had three different players with an assist. Andy Lubahn, Kyle Adams and Alfredo Rodriguez-Allen each had an assist.

Akira Fitzgerald and Michael Lisch combined for the shutout for the second straight game. Fitzgerald played the first 67:48 of the game, making one save, while Lisch played the final 22:12.

With the game scoreless in the 48th minute, Wake Forest was able to grab the lead with three shot attempts in the span of 20 seconds before finally finding the back of the net. Anthony Arena attempted the first shot from 22 yards out in the center of the field. The Furman goalkeeper was able to make the stop, but couldn't handle the ball cleanly. Lubahn attempted the second shot from inside the 18, but his attempt was also knocked down by the keeper. The deflection went behind the keeper to an open Bone, whose diving header from two yards out found the back of the net.

The Deacs doubled their lead with 26:50 left in the game. Adams played a long pass over the top to Opara. Opara flicked the ball over the charging keeper and then finished the goal with a shot from six yards out.

Furman had its first scoring chance of the second half with 21:30 left in the game. Fabien Vorbe's shot from 16 yards out on the left side of the 18-yard box sailed high to keep the Paladins scoreless.

Wake struck for the third time with 17:38 remaining in the game. Alfredo Rodriguez-Allen crossed the ball from the right side of the field and found Chris Estridge just outside the six. Estridge flicked the ball past the keeper and into the goal.

Neither team was able to get much offense going in the first 45 minutes. The Demon Deacons had five shot attempts in the first 45 minutes, while Furman attempted two shots.

The best chance for the Deacs came early in the first half on a shot attempt by Corben Bone. Bone's shot from the top of the 18 was saved by the Furman keeper to keep the game scoreless.

Furman fired its first shot with 23 minutes remaining in the first half. Debola Ogunseye attempted a side volley from the top of the 18, but Akira Fitzgerald was able to make the stop.

Josh Zimmer suffered the loss in goal for Furman, after replacing an injured Alec Kann. Zimmer allowed three goals and made four saves in 43:24. Kann played the first 46:36 and made two saves.

Wake Forest opens the regular season on Tuesday, September 1, when it plays host to William & Mary. Kickoff at Spry Stadium is scheduled for 7 p.m.