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Midfielder Lance Rozeboom slides in front of a pass from Towson player Daniel Grundei. The Lobos controlled the tempo of the game and sent the visiting Tigers home scoreless in an impressive season opener.

New additions, luck leads to late game win

It would be difficult to have a better start to your Lobo career than Giovanni Rollie’s.

A Lobo soccer’s redshirt freshman, Rollie scored his first goal in his first appearance for the Lobos during their 2-0 win Friday night over Towson, the first game of the season, in front of over 2,000 fans.

“It felt great scoring that goal,” Rollie said. “All of our hard work throughout the preseason really showed tonight. I am proud of the entire team.”

The Lobos took control of the game from the beginning.

Their first real chance to score came 20 minutes in, when Lawrence Robledo dribbled past two defenders but could not get his shot past Towson goalkeeper John Steele.

Two minutes later, junior Blake Smith missed when he blasted his shot over the crossbar.

Head coach Jeremy Fishbein then brought out freshmen James Rogers and Rollie, and his decision paid off.

With one minute left in the half, Rogers, playing in his first game as a Lobo, picked up the ball on the right wing, dribbled past his defender and found a wide-open Rollie, who slotted the ball from eight yards out.

Fishbein said that the performances of his substitutes impressed him.

“They made a difference, and when you have a good team, these guys want to come off the bench and make the team better,” he said.
The Lobos outshot Towson 20-6, and in the second half the Lobos took 13 shots at the Tigers’ goal.

Sophomore Carson Baldinger also looked to score in his first appearance for the Lobos seven minutes into the second half, but he failed to get his header on frame.

It was the same story for Devon Sandoval and Lance Rozeboom, as they could not find a way past Steele.

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With 15 minutes left, the Lobos were awarded a free kick 25 yards from the goal, and Robledo stepped up to take it. The ball went through the wall and rolled into the back of the net to double the Lobos’ lead.

“I was trying to go around the wall but the wall moved and the goalie could not see the ball until it was already in,” Robledo said. “We dominated play and locked them down. We should have scored a few more goals today, but I was happy with the win.”

The Lobos continued their pressure but could not find the back of the net a third time. The game ended 2-0.

Goalkeeper Victor Rodriguez was rarely tested and ended the game with just two saves, compared to the seven Steele had to make.

Fishbein said that his team deserved the win.

“I thought we were quite good tonight,” he said. “We gave them only one or two chances to score. They were a strong team; that first goal was important, but that second one was key.”

PQ: “They were a strong team; that first goal was important, but that second one was key.” -Jeremy Fishbein, head coach

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