NIU defeats Oakland 1-0 On Sunday Afternoon

GO HUSKIES Luis De La Cerda scored the game-winner for NIU.
GO HUSKIES
Luis De La Cerda scored the game-winner for NIU.
GO HUSKIES

Sept. 13, 2009

Final Stats

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DEKALB, Ill. - Senior midfielder Luis De La Cerda (Guadalajara, Mexico/Waubonsie Valley) scored the game-winning goal in the 85th minute and freshman goalkeeper Jordan Godsey (Ocean Springs, Miss./Ocean Springs) recorded his first career shutout as the 22nd-ranked Northern Illinois men's soccer team defeated Oakland 1-0 on the final day of the NIU adidas/Magnuson Inn and Suites Invitational at the NIU Soccer and Track & Field Complex Sunday afternoon.

The Huskies (2-2-1), who lost to No. 21 Tulsa 1-0 Friday night, placed third in the Invitational after getting an 85th minute goal from De La Cerda. The goal, De La Cerda's first of the 2009 season, was set up beautifully by junior forward Juan Hoyos (Aurora, Ill./Waubonsie Valley). Hoyos split two defenders with a pass that found De La Cerda one-on-one with Oakland goalkeeper Mitch Hildebrandt from ten yards out. De La Cerda slipped it past Hildebrandt to give the Huskies their second win of the season.

"If you look at the stats, they will show that our guys had a very good performance," said NIU head coach Eric Luzzi. "We created a lot of good chances but effort and desire got us the win."

"You are going to be hard pressed to find a prettier goal than De La Cerda's. We got good movement, a great pass from Juan and a well-timed run to get behind the back line from Luis."

The Huskies tallied 19 total shots, including nine shots on goal. Junior midfielder Engebreth Faerden (Oslo, Norway/Academy for Elite Athletes), De La Cerda and senior forward Ben Thomas (Hamilton, Ohio/Fairfield) led NIU with two shots on goal apiece. NIU had the ball in Oakland's zone for most of the game and earned nine corner kicks overall.

The NIU defense kept the Oakland attack away from Godsey all match long, as the freshman only had to make two saves for his first shutout of the 2009 season. The Golden Grizzlies (2-2-1) recorded just five total shots in the contest.

"We outshot them by a lot but it was a battle," said Luzzi. "We would have liked to score more goals. It was tight the entire match and our willingness to battle for each other is what made the difference in the end."

De La Cerda and Hoyos both received All-Invitational Team honors for their outstanding performance in the tournament.

The Huskies will return to action Friday, September 18th when they take on Lafayette in the Northwestern Lakeside Classic in Evanston, Ill. The match is set to begin at 5 p.m. CT.

-NIU-