August 26, 2016
PICKING IT UP
UConn men capture another opener
STORRS, Conn. -- Sophomore forward Abdou Mbacke Thiam picked up where he left off last season, scoring a goal less than a minute into the match as the No. 16 UConn men's team cruised to a 3-1 victory over Iona in both teamsí season-opener before a 3,714 crowd at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium Friday night.
The Huskies improved to 8-1-1 in season openers since the 2008 campaign and move to 3-0-2 all-time against the Gaels dating to 1995.
Connecticut jumped out to a 1-0 lead 57 seconds in as Kwame Awuah found Thiam at the top of the penalty area, Thiam advancing toward the left side of the goal before finishing into the bottom right corner from eight yards.
Iona responded as Daniel Huertas finished a Matias Correa pass in the fifth minute.
UConn went up, 2-1, with 18 seconds remaining in the half as Alex Sanchez converted his second career goal, taking a pass from Cheikh Stephane Coly on the left side of the penalty and firing a left-foot shot past Kellar Sirstins.
Redshirt freshman defender Nkoski Burgess finished a cross from senior Jake Nerwinski in the 80th minute.
Redshirt junior Scott Levene registered four saves.
The Huskies had a chance in the 15th minute when freshman Niko Petridis corralled a pass on the end line, his cross knocked away by Sirstins. Two minutes later, Sebastian Bremsí cross was headed just over the crossbar by Jacob Hauser-Ramsey.
The Huskies outshot the Gaels, 13-5, 7-2 margin in the second half.