Sep 4, 2013
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Propelled by second half goals from redshirt junior Daniel Keller and sophomore Jerry Ramirez, the seventh-ranked Louisville men's soccer team earned a 2-0 victory over Cleveland State in Wednesday night's home-opener at Cardinal Park.
With the win, the Cardinals improved to 2-0-0 for the third time in the last five seasons while the Vikings dropped to 1-2-0 overall.
"The momentum early this season comes from us playing better. The results and winning certainly help but more importantly we're making progress and getting better in a lot of different areas," said Louisville head coach Ken Lolla. "Tonight's result is encouraging because I think we're getting better. We have a long way to go, but I think we're making progress."
After the two teams played a scoreless opening half, Louisville moved ahead in the 58th minute when Keller (Carmel, Ind./Brebeuf Jesuit Prep School) connected on a header from seven yards out for his first goal of the season and a 1-0 advantage. The goal, which was the third of the career for Keller, was setup after freshman Romilio Hernandez (Lanham, Md./Edmund Blake HS) sent a free kick across from the left to Keller, who scored past Cleveland State goalkeeper Joe Kalt.
Moments later, the Cardinals added their second goal of the night when Ramirez (Chihuahua, Mexico/Summer Creek HS) fired a shot from 16 yards away into the upper right corner of the goal for his first career goal. Freshman Andrew Brody (Orlando, Fla./Vista Grande HS) and sophomore Ricardo Velazco (Casa Grande, Ariz./Cal State San Bernardino) were credited with assists on the goal by Ramirez to continue their hot starts in 2013. Brody has assisted on three of the Cardinals' four goals this season while Velazco has a goal and two assists through two games.
"In the first half, we were a little slow moving the ball but we kept a lot of possession," Keller said. "Going into halftime, we said we needed to move the ball faster and in the second half, we did move it much faster which opened up some spaces for us to get forward and ultimately score two goals. It was sharp, especially in the second half and we're encouraged with how it looked."
Overall, Louisville controlled the action holding the Vikings without a shot in Wednesday's match finishing with a 15-0 advantage in attempts. Junior goalkeeper Joachim Ball (Deutenberg, Germany) did not face a shot in earning his first shutout of the season and the second of his career as a Cardinal. Louisville also finished with a 4-2 edge in corner kicks.
Up next, No. 7 Louisville will continue its four-game homestand with a visit from Butler on Saturday at 7 p.m., ET at Cardinal Park. To purchase 2013 season tickets or to become a 2014 founding season ticket holder at Lynn Stadium, call (502) 852-0120 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.