LIMA, Ohio — Spencer Reinford’s goal with just over 12 minutes remaining snapped a 1-1 deadlock and lifted the University of Rio Grande to a 2-1 victory over the University of Northwestern Ohio, Thursday afternoon, at Racer Field.
Rio Grande, ranked No. 5 in the NAIA coaches’ poll, improved to 5-0 with the win.
UNOH, which was among the schools receiving votes in the same poll, dropped to 1-1-1 with the loss.
Reinford, a senior from McAlister, Pa., gathered in a crossing pass from the right win by junior teammate Samuel Pedersen (Aldershot, England) and pushed a shot past UNOH keeper Mark McMillian with 12:03 remaining to give the RedStorm a lead it would never relinquish.
Rio Grande grabbed a 1-0 lead just over 24 minutes into the contest when sophomore Nicolas Cam Orellana (Santiago, Chile) scored his seventh goal of the season off of a touch from junior Silas Machado (Sao Paulo, Brazil).
The host Racers tied the match with 27:33 remaining in the second half when Devin Morgan scored off an assist by Luka Pekovich, firing a shot from the left side of the 18-yard box into the upper right-hand corner of the net.
The goal was just the second of the season scored by a Rio opponent and snapped a scoreless streak of 400:17, covering the final 67:50 of the RedStorm’s season-opening win over St. Xavier (Ill.) on Aug. 17, three straight shutout wins and the first 62:27 of Thursday’s match.
Senior net-minder Richard Dearle (Castle Donington, England) recorded four saves for Rio in the win. His quartet of stops including a dazzling denial of a penalty kick by the Racers’ Marc Skelton with 12:49 left before halftime.
McMillan had one save for UNOH, which actually outshot the RedStorm, 10-5, in the contest.
Rio Grande returns to action next Wednesday when it travels to Mount Vernon Nazarene University.
Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director at the University of Rio Grande.