Generals cruise into ODAC title game after 4-0 win over Roanoke

Oliver Dolberg

LEXINGTON, Va. – The top-seeded Washington and Lee men's soccer team set a new mark of 13 straight games without a loss in its 4-0 win over fourth-seeded Roanoke in the ODAC semifinals on Saturday afternoon.

The 13 straight games without a loss breaks the program record of 12, held by the 2000 team. It is also the team's eighth consecutive win, the longest win streak the Generals have put together since winning nine in a row in 2016.

The Generals (13-3-1) got on the board early in the first half when, in just the 12th minute, junior defender Oliver Dolberg (Clovis, Calif./Floyd B. Buchanan) came away with a steal just outside the 18-yard box. Dolberg took one touch inside the box, another touch to get by a defender and shot to the far post to beat the keeper and put W&L out in front.

W&L didn't score again until the 51st minute when senior midfielder Dylan Ritch (Mint Hill, N.C./Independence) stepped in front of a pass between Roanoke defenders, giving himself an instant breakaway. Ritch dribbled into the box and scored inside the right post. Seven minutes later, Ritch capitalized on another defensive miscue from the Maroons when he got another steal and breakaway. This time, Ritch beat the keeper from close range and shot into an empty net for his second goal of the game.

The scoring concluded in the 66th minute when sophomore forward Harris Salom (Blacksburg, Va./Blacksburg) passed to Ritch in the offensive half. Ritch gave the ball right back to Salom inside the box before Salom's 15-yard shot found the back of the net for the team's fourth goal.

With his two goals, Ritch tied the program record for consecutive games with a goal, as the senior has now scored at least once in each of the last six games, a feat reached just two other times in the history of the program. His multi-goal effort pushed him up to sixth on the all-time goals list (35) and helped him set a new single-season career high in goals (13), while his five-point performance puts him at 92 for his career, third most in W&L lore.

Ritch was one of two Generals with three shots in the game to lead the team, as he and Salom each shot three times and put two shots on goal. Dolberg and sophomore forward Jack Parham (Littleton, Colo./Colorado Academy) came in next with two shots each.

First-year goalkeeper Michael Nyc (Kildeer, Ill./Adlai E. Stevenson) (12-1-1) continued his hot streak with a pair of saves in the contest, extending his shutout streak to 674 consecutive minutes. Nyc now has five consecutive shutouts, six in his last seven starts, and hasn't allowed a goal since the first minute of a 2-1 win over Hampden-Sydney on Oct. 10.

The Maroons (10-5-3) were paced by first-year defender Vincent Lamina and first-year forward Liam Camilleri, who both shot three times and put a shot each on goal. Junior goalkeeper Alex Sullivan (10-5-3) took the loss for Roanoke after allowing one goal on three shots in the first half. First-year keeper Zach Behe took over for Sullivan for the second half and made one save.

For the game, the Generals outshot the Maroons, 15-9, with a 7-2 advantage in shots on goal. W&L also won the corner kick battle, taking five and conceding one.

The Generals will look for their fifth ODAC Championship (first since 2015) on Sunday when they face-off against third-seeded Bridgewater at 1:00 pm at Watt Field in the conference title game.