Virginia Powers Past Pioneers, 3-0

Photo: Courtesy of UVA Soccer Twitter

Just hours after being ranked the number one team in the nation by Top Drawer Soccer, the Denver Pioneers (10-1-2) fell to a very talented University of Virginia (7-1-2) side. The Pioneers were unsettled from the start and unprepared for Virginia’s size, tempo and ball control. Daryl Dike, a 6’3″ 225 skilled freshman forward from Oklahoma, put Virginia in the lead at 27:03 of the first half off a Scott Devoss deflection as Denver struggled to clear the ball from the box. Four minutes later, the Cavilers struck again on a strike off a Nathaniel Croft corner. Virginia’s Simeon Okoro buried the cross at 31:19 to give Virginia a 2-0 advantage. Denver started to move the ball into the Cavalier side of the field the final 10 minutes of the first half but were out-shot 7-0 in the first 45 minutes.

DU came out the second half and gained much better possession the first 13 minutes but could not create quality scoring opportunities. Eventually, the Cavaliers pressure and skill on the ball began to wear down the visitors and create DU miscues. Finally freshman Daryl Dike shot a laser at 69:32 from outside the box past Will Palmquist to make the score 3-0, Virginia. The rest of the match, Virginia controlled the ball and ran clock until time expired.

Denver could only muster 1 shot-on-goal and 2 corners for the match. Andre Shinyashiki could never get off a shot-on-goal while Virginia had 14 shots and 5 shots-on-goal.

It is clear why Jamie Franks is scheduling top opponents such as Creighton, Virginia, Maryland and Stanford, as the Summit League schedule does not prepare Denver for NCAA knockout soccer. A bright spot was a solid game in goal by Will Palmquist and the return of midfielder Moshe Perez (26 minutes). Kenny Akimatsu, a critical Senior midfielder, continues to sit for unexplained reasons. This afternoon provided the Pioneers with a valuable lesson in what it will take to compete for a return trip to the College Cup.

Denver returns to face another East Coast opponent next week, Maryland, and can see if they can elevate their performance with more rest and preparation against a solid but lesser opponent than Virginia.

 

4 thoughts on “Virginia Powers Past Pioneers, 3-0”

  1. Credit Virginia. The Cavaliers were coming off a loss today, and they flat out dominated DU today in every single category.

    One could question whether the Pioneers were ready to play today on only two days rest coupled with a cross country travel, but that’s the reality of being a mid-major who wants to play against the good teams.

    Another factor to consider was that Virginia assistant coach Ryan Hopkins recruited most of the DU players when he was associate head coach of DU under Jamie Franks until this season. He obviously had the right game plan to stop DU…

    For DU, they will need to learn from this. Nothing cleanses the soul like an old-fashioned ass-kicking, and if the Pioneers can learn from it, the loss might be a very good lesson.

    I think the Pios are a pretty resilient bunch, and I think they will get back to playing better soccer, especially now that Moshe Perez can play again…

    With eight days to prepare, I like DU’s chances against Big 10 foe Maryland…

  2. Credit Virginia. The Cavaliers were coming off a loss today, and they flat out dominated DU today in every single category.

    One could question whether the Pioneers were ready to play today on only two days rest coupled with a cross country travel, but that’s the reality of being a mid-major who wants to play against the good teams.

    Another factor to consider was that Virginia assistant coach Ryan Hopkins recruited most of the DU players when he was associate head coach of DU under Jamie Franks until this season. He obviously had the right game plan to stop DU…

    For DU, they will need to learn from this. Nothing cleanses the soul like an old-fashioned ass-kicking, and if the Pioneers can learn from it, the loss might be a very good lesson.

    I think the Pios are a pretty resilient bunch, and I think they will get back to playing better soccer, especially now that Moshe Perez can play again…

    With eight days to prepare, I like DU’s chances against Big 10 foe Maryland…

  3. Our soccer team is not a mid-major. We just are not in a power 5 conference; the same boat as many other powerful soccer programs. It that’s the criteria, then ASU is a major hockey school and North Dakota is a mid-major who does well at hockey.

  4. Our soccer team is not a mid-major. We just are not in a power 5 conference; the same boat as many other powerful soccer programs. It that’s the criteria, then ASU is a major hockey school and North Dakota is a mid-major who does well at hockey.

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