By News Release
The Masters University Mustangs opened up the Golden State Athletic Conference portion of its schedule with a 1-0 home victory over (RV) Vanguard University on Thursday.
In the process, the Mustangs earned head coach Jim Rickard the 350th win of his Master’s tenure in his 31st season at the helm of the Mustangs. Rickard now ranks eighth among active NAIA coaches and 10th all-time in NAIA history in victories.
Aidan Rohde scored for the second-straight game, with his 27th-minute goal proving to be the difference.
Giorgio Martino was credited with an assist after passing inside to Rohde at the top of the box. Rohde faked a shot with his right foot, cut past two defenders onto his left and then powered a shot that found the side netting at the far post.
“Aidan has worked so hard over his time at Master’s,” Rickard said. “I was very proud of his finish and work rate throughout the game.”
Rohde came close to adding a second goal in the second half when his flick header hit the top of the crossbar. TMU had a couple other chances to add to its lead, with Corny Miller having his shot blocked and Theo Kudlo’s curling effort going wide.
Ultimately, it was the Mustang defense that was able to hold firm and earn its third shutout of the season.
“We struggled at times to put consistent passes together and had to defend much more than we wanted to,” Rickard said. “That puts a burden on the back line, but Kian and the defenders came up big several times to preserve the conference opener.”
Goalkeeper Kian Bensend made four saves to keep the visiting Lions off the scoresheet.
Master’s (4-4-1 overall, 1-0 GSAC) now turns its sight toward a GSAC matchup with San Diego Christian on Saturday at 4 p.m.
“Our midfielders and forwards worked tirelessly all game long,” Rickard said. “We have to focus ahead of us now to a quick turnaround with San Diego Christian.”
-The above information was submitted on behalf of The Masters University by Assistant Athletic Director Tim Heiduk