The Ashland University men's soccer team scored three times and posted a clean sheet as the Eagles blanked Malone, 3-0, in a season-opening nonconference game on Thursday (Aug. 31) night at Ferguson Field.
The Eagles (1-0) wasted little time in getting on the board as Pioneers handled the ball in the box to allow a penalty kick, which sophomore Andrew Pearson slotted home for Ashland's first goal of the season in the eighth minute.
Ashland continued to get numbers forward for the duration of the first half and probably could have added a couple more goals, but still held a 1-0 lead going into the intermission. AU had a 10-2 advantage in shots in the first half.
After the break, Malone was able to gain more possession, but the Eagles all but put the game away in the 61st minute when freshman Justin Libertowski took a pass from freshman Keegan Farver and notched his first collegiate goal to double Ashland's lead.
Just 50 seconds before full-time, sophomore Thomas Ardron, who got behind the Malone defense several times in the game, was able to put one past the Malone keeper to give the Eagles a 3-0 lead. Sophomore Jordan Dees was credited with the assist.
Freshman goalkeeper Dimitrius Karousos and the rest of the back line kept the Pioneers out of the back of the net. Karousos was called into action to make four saves.
The Eagles will now have two days off to prepare for a trip to Columbus on Sunday (Sept. 3) to take on Ohio Dominican in a nonconference contest.