No Fear For New-Look Trojans On Day One|
Sept. 6, 2014
SAN DIEGO, CALIF. -- Around half USC's scoring in its first games of 2014 came from the hands of brand-new Trojans as USC made an early-season statement with two big wins out of the gates at the Triton Invitational in San Diego. No. 2 USC took out No. 11 UC Davis 19-3 with 10 goals coming from USC true freshmen to start the day. In the afternoon, USC blasted La Verne with a 24-5 victory to wrap up a day that saw seven USC players tally their first career goals as Trojans.
In both games today, USC came out to quick starts. The Trojans took a 6-0 lead on the Aggies and a 9-0 lead on La Verne en route to their two dominant performances. Against UC Davis, USC freshman James Walters scored twice in USC's 6-0 start, joined by fellow freshman Matteo Morelli with their first Trojan goals during that opening surge. Both Walters and Morelli would finish up the game with hat trick in their first appearances as Trojans. Mihajlo Milicevic and Grant Stein would also slice their ways to the back of the net to record the first goals of their respective USC freshman seasons. USC would build a 10-2 lead on the Aggies in that one, adding nine more goals in the second half of action to finish up the 19-3 victory. USC freshman goalie McQuin Baron went the distance in the cage for the Trojans, collecting six saves in his first action for USC. The rest of USC's scoring came from the hands of some tried-and-true Trojans. Senior Kostas Genidounias posted a four-goal game, with fellow senior Marc Vonderweidt adding a pair. Also in on the scoring were returning Trojans Luke Felton (2 goals), Mac Carden, and Max Hurst-Mendoza.
The afternoon game pitting the Trojans against La Verne. Another freshman goalie manned the cage for USC in this one, with Ben Goncharenko taking over and anchoring the Trojans to a 24-5 victory in his debut. In front of him, USC would rack up a 9-0 lead on La Verne, as Genidounias had four goals in the books by the close of the first frame, en route to a five-goal first half for the senior. With that offensive spark, USC built an 8-0 lead in the first period, with first-year players Stein, Milicevic and Morelli joined the fun to craft that early advantage. La Verne managed a three-goal spurt that made it 9-3, only to see USC regroup and manufacture an 11-goal scoring surge that all but decided things. A grand total of 12 different Trojans would score in this one, led by Genidounias' five and a hat trick for freshman Stein. Edwards, Milicevic and Morelli each added two along with vets Mac Carden and Butler and Charlie McBee. And ringing up their first goals as Trojans were two USC redshirt freshmen -- Joe Nelson and Andrew Silvers. On the defensive end, Goncharenko finished up with six saves in his USC debut.
The Trojans now turn to more competition at the Triton Invitational tomorrow. USC will face Redlands at 9:40 a.m. tomorrow morning, followed by a 3:10 p.m. clash with Pacific, marking a rematch of the 2013 NCAA Championship game that the Trojans won in overtime to tally their sixth consecutive national championship.
SAVES: McQuin Baron (USC) 6, Creed (UCD) 9.
SAVES: Ben Goncharenko (USC) 6, Newell (LV) 14.