CHICAGO – The University of Chicago men's soccer team rode a three-goal performance from junior forward Max Lopez and blitzed St. Norbert College in the second half to pick up a 7-1 triumph.
The No. 9-ranked Maroons improved to 3-0 and the Green Knights dropped to 1-2 on the season.
Friday evening's contest marked the second hat trick of Lopez's career. He previously scored three times versus Wartburg College at home on Sept. 18, 2016.
The game's first goal came a mere four minutes in. A dangerous corner kick attempt from UChicago appeared to be headed clear by St. Norbert. But sophomore midfielder Gary Zhao pounced on the loose ball in the box and put in a shot through traffic to make it 1-0.
In the 17th minute, the Maroons struck again. Sophomore forward Dayo Adeosun sent a centering pass through the air in the box from the left side. The ball lightly skimmed off the top of one defender's head and Lopez was there to redirect a reflexive header into the goal.
The last 20 minutes of the half were rougher on the Maroons. UChicago struggled to keep possession and St. Norbert's attackers gained traction on their runs. With just under six minutes remaining, the Green Knights took their shot, collected the long rebound and scored to halve the deficit.
The momentum for the visitors ended for good in the 58th minute. With his back to the goal, Lopez received the ball and immediately one-touched a back-heel pass into space in the box. Freshman defender Scott Lich caught up to it and found a wide-open Adeosun, who calmly deposited the ball into the back of the netting.
But the home side was just getting warmed up. The Maroons scored three more times between the 69th and 72nd minutes. Junior forward Matthew Koh made it 4-0 with a speedy run up the right side past his defenders. A double assist from Adeosun and sophomore defender Panos Voulgaris hooked up Lopez for his second score of the night. Lopez then clinched his team-high sixth goal of the season less than a minute later with an uncontested blast in front off an assist by Adeosun.
With both teams clearing their benches, UChicago put one more on for good measure. Freshman forward Bryce Millington tallied his first career goal in the 78th minute with a smooth header off senior defender Gary Huang's corner kick.
The Maroons won the shots category 18-13 and corner kicks 7-2. Senior goalkeeper Hill Bonin moved to 3-0 on the season, allowing one goal while making four saves in 74 minutes. Freshman Aaron Katsimpalis made his collegiate debut in relief for the remaining 15:27.
- Saturday, Sept. 9 @ 7:30 PM – UChicago at Carthage College