JMU men's soccer midfielder Clay Obara rushes for the ball against UVA in a 1-0 double overtime win on Sept. 21. 

An early goal by redshirt sophomore midfielder Clay Obara was all JMU men’s soccer needed Saturday evening, defeating Elon 2-0. The Dukes improve to 7-2 (3-0 CAA), while the Phoenix drop to 4-4 (2-1 CAA)

The match was a defensive battle from the start, with the first shot coming from JMU redshirt freshman defender Yanis Lelin at 7’. Less than two minutes later, Obara took a cross from Blanton and fired it into the back of the net to give the Dukes a 1-0 lead.

The momentum was in JMU’s grasp from then on.

The Dukes didn’t allow Elon to take a shot until 19’, and the Phoenix took only four shots in the first half — none on goal. In contrast, JMU had nine shots on goal in the first half, six of them on goal. Redshirt junior goalkeeper Peter Wentzel saved five shots, preventing the Dukes from expanding the lead. JMU held onto its 1-0 lead entering halftime.

The Phoenix took 13 shots after the break, with five on goal. However, JMU graduate goalkeeper Martin Leu stood tall, saving four shots to preserve the Dukes’ advantage.

At 82’, redshirt sophomore midfielder/forward Rodrigo Robles passed the ball to redshirt junior forward Luca Erhardt, who scored to give JMU an insurance goal. Elon took two shots the rest of the match but they were both off target.

The Dukes play match two of their three-match road trip Sept. 28 at George Washington, with kickoff set for 2 p.m. Elon stays home and welcomes Campbell on Sept. 29 at 7 p.m.

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Score card

8:03 - Clay Obara (3), assisted by Josiah Blanton and Melker Anshelm, 1-0 JMU

81:26 - Luca Erhardt (4), assisted by Rodrigo Robles, 2-0 JMU