Asher's Goal Topples NCAA's Second-Best Defense
Oct. 17, 2012
HURRICANE, W.Va. -- Junior Dylan Asher netted his first career goal in his first ever start at forward, leading Kentucky to a thrilling 1-0 win over Marshall, the NCAA's second-best defense, on a chilly Wednesday night at Hurricane High School.
The Kentucky win marked its second consecutive for the Wildcats, who earned a league win on Saturday at No. 25 UAB. The loss for the Thundering Herd marked just their second of the year, with Marshall entering the game having allowed only four goals in 12 games to rank second in the NCAA in defense.
A native of Richardson, Texas, Asher netted his first career goal in his 44th game and 42nd career start. A two-time All-Conference USA defender, Asher shifted to forward for the first time in his career in place of junior Tyler Riggs. Riggs, who has seven goals and four assists in 13 games, did not make the trip due to injury.
The game was played at Hurricane High School, about 30 minutes from the Marshall campus in Huntington, W.Va., due to construction on-going at a new soccer facility. The loss was the first at home for the Herd in 2012.
The win for UK improves the 2012 road record to 5-2, a year removed from a 0-7-1 road record. Over its last nine games, after opening up the 2012 season with a 1-4 record, UK boasts a 6-2-1 mark, including a 17-11 goal differential.
Kentucky (7-6-1, 2-1-1 C-USA) got a splendid game from junior keeper Jack Van Arsdale, who saved five shots in his third shutout of the year. Marshall (10-2-1, 2-2-0 C-USA) keeper Daniel Withrow saved two shots in the game. UK got a strong performance from its backline, as outside backs Isak Krogstad and Jacob Kemper forced offensive tempo throughout the game and centerbacks Steven Perinovic and Jacob Speed were forces in the middle of the back four.
UK got on the board in the 55th minute, taking a 1-0 lead on some nice ball movement on the attacking end. Lodge set up the goal by finding Asher inside the box, with the junior firing a hard-hit shot across the box at the far post, beating the diving Marshall keeper. The goal was the first of Asher's career and the assist marked the first of 2012 for Lodge, who now has 16 in his career. Gabriel Conelian was awared an assist on the goal as well, his first career assist.
Kentucky will return to action with a conference game on Sunday, hosting FIU at 5 p.m. ET at the UK Soccer Complex.
GAME NOTES: UK junior forward Tyler Riggs, UK's leading scorer, did not start for the first time in 2012 ... Junior Dylan Asher made his first career start at forward ... Asher netted his first career goal ... Matt Lodge recorded his first assist of the year and the 16th of his career ... Lodge now has 62 points in his four-year career, sixth-most in UK career history ... UK is now 5-2 on the road in 2012, a year removed from a 0-7-1 record on the road ... UK is now 6-2-1 in its last nine games ... The win at Marshall was UK's first since a 2-1 overtime win in Huntington in 2010 ... UK leads the series 15-7-3 all-time ... Jack Van Arsdale notched his third shutout of the year, saving five shots.