STORRS, Conn. - Playing in front of a crowd of over 4,400, the UConn men's soccer team defeated Rhode Island, 1-0, to secure its third-straight win on Saturday night at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium. With the victory, the Huskies improve to 3-0-3, while the Rams fall to 4-3-0.
The Huskies extended their unbeaten streak to 13-straight in the win and also recorded their fourth shutout in six matches this season.
Connecticut jumped on the board at the 20:30 mark when freshman forward Fredrik Jonsson registered his first career goal to give UConn a 1-0 edge. Junior co-captain Jake Nerwsinki laid a through-ball off for the freshman at the top right corner of the box before Jonsson collected and slid a shot into the bottom left of the net. With the helper, Nerwinski joined fellow captain Kwame Awuah at the top of the assist leader chart in 2015 (2).
Scott Levene, who entered the match with the country's 13th best GAA (0.35), posted his fourth shutout of the season and 12th shutout in 17 career starts. The goalie made a season-high four saves in the 90-minute match.
Awuah connected with redshirt-sophomore midfielder Sanchez on a long cross down the left flank in the eighth minute that led to the game's first corner. Thiam sent in an attempt that bounced around in the box before Moustapha Samb collected and fired a shot that was blocked by a URI centerback.
The Huskies had a quality chance in the 13th minute when Sanchez threaded a through ball to Awuah at the top left of the box but the captain's shot was saved by a lunging effort from Rams' keeper Chad Fox.
UConn had an excellent look at the 57-minute mark when Thiam beat a defender to the endline before tapping in a pass to Jonsson but the forward's shot got caught in traffic and was knocked away from danger. 13 minutes later, junior midfielder Sebastian Brems sent a through ball up the field to redshirt-senior forward Tyler Leeman, who made a defender miss before sending in a low left-footed shot that was scooped up by Fox.
Prior to the match, the program honored 28-year head coach Joe Morrone, who passed away early Thursday morning, with a moment of silence.
In total, UConn held a 12-to-5 shot advantage and also led in corner attempts, 5-to-0.
Next up, the Huskies head on to the road to challenge Boston College on Tuesday, Sept. 22. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.