Aug 23, 2013
Huntington, W.Va. – On a day intended to celebrate the 34-year history of Marshall men’s soccer, the 2013 squad defeated the alumni team, 2-0, in an exhibition on Friday evening at Hoops Family Field at Veterans Memorial Soccer Complex.
The exhibition offered Marshall Head Coach Bob Gray a chance to give the bulk of his young roster, game experience before the start of the regular season.
“What a tremendous turnout of alumni and that shows how much a facility like this means to them,” explained Coach Gray. “They are all in envy because they wish they could have played in a place like this, but they are so happy for our program. As far as the game itself, it was a competitive game and we got a lot out of it because we played a lot of our guys and we got the result as well.”
With the two sides playing an abbreviated game with two forty-minute halves as opposed to the NCAA-regulation forty five, the past of Marshall soccer got an up-close view of the present state of the program in action.
The grand opening festivities offered a chance for public recognition of the facility which cost $8 million and took two years to construct.
Seventy alumni were on hand for the festivities, with several participating in the exhibition. The graduation dates of the attendees ranged from 1982 to 2011. Former Marshall Head Coach Jack Defazio (1982-88) was also on hand to reminisce about his seven-year tenure in Huntington.
Not much action took place in the first half as the 2013 Marshall team found itself in a scoreless draw with the alumni squad at intermission. At the break, the current Herd team had four corner kicks and four shots on goal through the first 40, while the alumni had zero in each category.
Once having settled into its new home, Marshall got on the board with 14:20 remaining in the second half. Jahvon Allison provided the score on a strike that was blasted into the top left corner of the net from 25 yards out for the first ever goal at Veterans Memorial Soccer Complex to put the 2013 squad up 1-0 over the alumni team.
The Herd were not done on the offensive end as with 3:25 to play, a cross into the box from Tommy Trupo was headed home by freshman Felipe Thompson for the second goal of the day. The 2012 Gatorade West Virginia Boys Soccer Player of the Year, Thompson made it 2-0 to give a safe advantage for Marshall.
The Herd showed signs of its stingy defense throughout the exhibition as Marshall shutout the alumni, along with the 2013 squad having recorded more shots and corner kicks.
Marshall will hit the road for its season-opener when the Herd takes on Appalachian State on Friday, Aug. 30. The contest will also kick off a four-game road swing for Marshall to begin the 2013 campaign.
For more information on Marshall men’s soccer, follow (@HerdMSoccer) or visit www.HerdZone.com.