Sept. 3, 2004
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State men’s soccer team was dealt a 2-0 loss by eighth-ranked Wake Forest Friday night as the Buckeyes opened the 2004 season as hosts of the Ohio State Classic in Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. Ohio State collected 12 shots in the contest compared to 13 for the Demon Deacons, with eight of those shots being saved by Wake Forest goalkeeper Brian Edwards.
In the opening match of the Classic, Penn State and sixth-ranked North Carolina played to a 1-1 tie in double-overtime.
“I was very proud of the way our guys played tonight,” Ohio State head coach John Bluem said. “We knew coming into the game this would be a tough one. They have experience and they have depth. We just need to pick up the pieces, come out here and put up a good performance on Sunday.”
The Demon Deacons opened the scoring in the 20th minute of play when Scott Sealy skidded a shot into the bottom right corner of the net off an assist from Stephen Keel.
Ohio State had a several scoring chances in the first half as senior Justin Cook (Winter Springs, Fla./Oviedo) took a strong shot that was just high and junior Kyle Veris (Strongsville, Ohio/Univ. of Akron) was barely wide left on a direct kick. The Buckeyes were inches away from a goal in the 42nd minute as junior Reid Traeger (Littleton, Colo./Heritage) nearly knocked the ball past Edwards after Veris sent a nice pass into the goalkeeper box.
“We built good chances and had opportunities, but if you don’t put those in, you can’t score goals,” Cook said. “It’s frustrating, but we got the first part – the build-up. The first part is good, now we just have to finish that.”
Wake Forest added another goal shortly into the second half when Wes Allen knocked a header into the net from just outside the 6-yard box in the 49th minute. Steven Curfman and Julian Valentin were credited with assists on the play. In the 53rd minute, Veris sent a sharp liner towards the top of the net that was deflected at the last second by a diving save from Edwards. In the 62nd minute, Cook and Veris nearly connected on another scoring opportunity but saw the ball skid away out of the goalkeeper box.
Buckeye freshman goalkeeper Casey Latchem (Perrysburg, Ohio/Perrysburg) put up a solid effort as he started in his first collegiate game, making three saves against the talented Demon Deacon offense. Sophomore Brent Rohrer (Springfield, Ohio/Springfield Catholic) and senior Eric Schwebach (Eden Prairie, Minn./Eden Prairie) thwarted several Wake Forest scoring opportunities in the first half.
Junior Kevin Nugent (Centerville, Ohio/Centerville) and sophomore Taylor Korpieski (Westerville, Ohio/Thomas Worthington) helped set up the Buckeyes with possession in the attacking zone on several occasions in the match. Cook led Ohio State with three shots, while he and Veris each had two shots on goal.
“We need to finish better, other then that we played well. We held our own with an 8th ranked team. We just have to finish. For the game on Sunday we have the pieces, we just have to finish.”
Ohio State will face No. 6 North Carolina at 2:30 p.m. Sunday in the final match of the 2004 Ohio State Classic.
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