Ritch breaks career assists record, helps W&L clinch top seed in ODAC Tournament

Dylan Ritch getting mobbed

LEXINGTON, Va. – An assist on the game's first goal gave Washington and Lee senior midfielder Dylan Ritch (Mint Hill, N.C./Independence) the program's all-time assists record to highlight the men's soccer team's 3-0 win over Eastern Mennonite to clinch the top seed in the 2018 ODAC Championship Tournament.

The 3-0 win not only marks the sixth consecutive win for the Generals (11-3-1, 9-0-1 ODAC) but goes down as the team's 11th straight game without a loss, the longest streak since 2011. The Generals' 9-0-1 final regular season mark in ODAC games is also just the second time W&L has completed the regular season conference slate without a loss since 1998, with the other instance coming in 2015 (10-0-1).

Ritch set the program's career assist record on the game's first goal in the 66th minute when he took a shot that was saved. The rebound came right to the foot of senior midfielder Viktor Dolberg (Clovis, Calif./Floyd B. Buchanan) who buried the one-timer for his second goal of the season.

In the 81st minute, first-year midfielder George Biddle (Del Mar, Calif./Pacific Ridge) received a long pass on the left side of the field from sophomore defender Erik Recke (Boyertown, Pa./Boyertown Area). Biddle dribbled in and had his initial shot hit off the cross bar, before he settled the rebound and put in the second chance for his first career goal.

Ritch added to his day with a goal in the final minute of play when he scored off a shot from sophomore midfielder Jack Parham (Littleton, Colo./Colorado Academy) that bounced off the post. It was Ritch's ninth goal of the season and his fourth straight game with at least one goal.

The assist for Ritch in the 66th minute was the 23rd of his career, passing Mike Mitchem '22 and Patrick Brown '89 who both amassed 22 helpers in their time at W&L. The streak of four consecutive games with a goal for Ritch ties the longest streak of his career while the score also moved him into the 30-goal club for his career, one of seven players in program history to reach that mark.

Dolberg and Ritch both shot five times in the contest and combined for four shots on goal. Biddle came in next with three shots, one on target, and four other Generals tallied two shots in the game. First-year goalkeeper Michael Nyc (Kildeer, Ill./Adlai E. Stevenson) (10-1-1) made two saves posted his third consecutive shutout and fourth overall this season, with all four clean sheets coming in his last five starts.

The Royals (9-8-1, 6-4-0 ODAC) were paced on offense by junior midfielder Caleb Oakes who shot three times to lead a group of seven Royals who combined for 10 shots in the game. Senior goalkeeper Emmanuel Kampanga (8-8-1) took the loss but made six saves in 90 minutes of action.

For the game, the Generals outshot the Royals, 26-10, including a 14-1 margin in the first half, and earned 10 corners kicks while limiting the Royals to four.

This concludes the 2018 regular season for W&L as the Generals will next play on Sunday in the ODAC Quarterfinals at Watt Field at 2:00 pm.

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