Sept. 27, 2009

Courtesy of Wake Forest Athletics

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Wake Forest freshman defender Anthony Arena scored his first collegiate goal to lift the sixth-ranked Demon Deacons to a 1-0 victory against No. 8 Harvard on a rainy Saturday night at Spry Stadium.

The Demon Deacons improve to 5-1-1 on the season with the victory, while the Crimson suffers their first loss of the season, falling to 6-1-0.

Both teams were forced to battle sloppy field conditions due to rain, which had fallen in the Winston-Salem area for most of Saturday. The field conditions limited many quality scoring chances for either team.

With the game scoreless in the 62nd minute, Wake Forest tallied the only goal of the game. A low line drive corner kick from Austin da Luz came all the way through the six-yard box and found Arena in front of the net. The Kenmore, Wash., native was able to get just enough of the ball to send it inside the left post for the first goal of his collegiate career and give Wake Forest a 1-0 lead.

The Demon Deacons had a chance to extend the lead in the 65th minute. Corben Bone's free kick from 22 yards out in the center of the field hit off the cross bar and went over the end line for a Harvard goal kick.

Harvard was unable to generate many quality chances in the second half. The best chance for the Crimson came in the 73rd minute when Ben Tsuda had a shot from 15 yards out in front of the goal. Tsuda's shot, however, was blocked by a Wake Forest defender to keep the Deacs in front.

The Wake Forest defense was able to keep Harvard quiet for the rest of the game as Wake Forest held on for a 1-0 win.

The assist for da Luz on Arena's goal was the 29th of his career, tying the Wake Forest school record, also held by Justin Moose (2002-05). Da Luz now has a team-best five assists and seven points on the season as well.

Neither team was able to get many quality looks at goal due to the field conditions. Wake Forest held a 10-7 advantage in shots, although Harvard held a 3-2 advantage in shots on goal. Each team attempted five corner kicks in the game.

Wake Forest goalkeeper Akira Fitzgerald notched his second shutout of the season, making three saves. Fitzgerald now has 16 saves in his career. Austin Harms suffered the loss in net for Harvard, giving up one goal and making a save.

Bone, Luke Norman and Zack Schilawski each attempted a team-high two shots for the Demon Deacons. Harvard was led offensively by Andre Akpan, who attempted three shots.

Scoring chances were limited in the first 45 minutes. Harvard had the first look at goal in the eighth minute. Akpan attempted a shot from 10 yards out near the endline, but his shot was saved by Fitzgerald and send over the endline for a corner kick.

Wake Forest had its best chance of the first half in the 40th minute. Sam Redmond played a cross from the right side of the field and found Sean Randolph making a run down the middle of the field. Randolph's header attempt from seven yards out in front of the goal sailed high to keep the game scoreless entering halftime.