The JMU men’s soccer team dropped its season opener Friday night in a 2-0 loss to Vermont at University Park in the Fairfield Inn by Marriott JMU Invitational.
The Catamounts struck early against JMU, scoring their first goal just four minutes into the contest. Vermont forward Brian Wright tallied the goal after a cross into the box found Wright six yards from goal with the ball on his foot. Wright fired his shot to the left post and curled it in just inside the bar to put the Catamounts up 1-0.
Pushing throughout the second half to find the equalizer, the Dukes got quality chances but couldn’t get anything past Vermont goalkeeper Connor Leland. Overall, the Dukes outshot Vermont 17-11, but only four of JMU’s shots were on target while six shots were on goal for the Catamounts.
With less than six minutes remaining in the game, Vermont got its insurance goal with Shane Haley punching a shot past an out-charging redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Kyle Morton (West Chester, Pa./Reed Henderson). The shot from 30 yards out got past a diving Morton and in the back of the net for the goal.
In the match, JMU won 10 corner kicks while Vermont only took five. Josh Grant (Plymouth, England/Torpoint College) took a team-high five shots, two of which were on target.
James Madison will close out the JMU Invitational on Sunday, Aug. 31, in a 2:30 p.m. match against Albany. The Great Danes battled Appalachian State to a scoreless draw in the first game of the JMU Invitational prior to the Dukes taking on Vermont.