A pair of second-half goals, two minutes apart, propelled the Pioneers (1-0) past the Zags (0-1)Thursday night at Pioneer Field. Both teams had scoring chances but Denver made the most of their opportunities. Senior Aiden O’Toole had a field day with one goal and two assists to contribute to all three Denver tallies.
The teams traded goals in the first half. Denver got on the board first with a Sam Basset goal, assisted by Aiden O’Toole and Ronan Wynne 15 minutes into the first half. Gonzaga countered 12 minutes later with a goal of their own by Frankie Ljucovic. The teams went into the break knotted 1-1.
Both teams continued their physical play into the second half with each squad missing scoring opportunities. Aiden O’Toole broke the deadlock with a goal in traffic. Then, two minutes later, O’Toole dished out an assist to teammate Ian Smith who tucked the ball into the net for a 3-1 advantage.
"Oh Yes O'Toole!" @ConorMcGahey @AltitudeTV #GoPios pic.twitter.com/Ye1bGN1tUo
— Denver MSoccer (@DU_MSoccer) August 26, 2022
Denver finished the match with a solid defensive effort over the final 20 minutes to end the contest. Denver outshot the visitors 15-10 but picked up 19 fouls, more than twice as many as the Zags. However, Gonzaga earned 4 yellow cards to Denver’s 2 yellow cards in the hard-played match.
Denver travels to Grand Canyon for a match Sunday at 8:30 pm MT in a rematch of their NCAA Tournament showdown last season which DU won 1-0.
2 thoughts on “Denver Downs Gonzaga, 3-1, in Season Opener”
Nice to see early offense for a program that has lacked it in the years since Shinyashiki graduated into the MLS.
Beautiful set up on the first goal, and great win DU!