This post was updated Sept. 8 at 11:25 p.m.
Junior forward Milan Iloski tracked a long ball to the right edge of Maryland’s penalty box in the 61st minute.
Following a misplay by Terrapin goalkeeper Russell Shealy, Iloski dribbled across the endline, avoiding a sliding defender, and poised himself for a shot at the now-empty net. Just as Shealy was recovering, Iloski faked another shot, waited for the goalkeeper to dive prematurely and slotted the ball into the top corner for his third goal of the night.
With less than 30 minutes remaining, the Bruins led 3-1 against last year’s national champions.
Iloski’s hat trick helped push UCLA men’s soccer (2-1-0) to a 3-2 upset over No. 3 Maryland (1-2-0) at the Wallis Annenberg Stadium on Friday.
“I thought we had moments that were very good and obviously we did just enough to get the result we wanted,” said coach Ryan Jorden. “From this game, there are lots of opportunities for us to continue to grow in areas where we can get better and it’s (the coaches’ job) to help the guys do it.”
The Terrapins took an early 1-0 lead with a goal from forward Eric Matzelevich in the 5th minute of play.
Following a Maryland throw in, a long ball up the middle of the field set up Matzelevich one-on-one with UCLA sophomore goalkeeper Justin Garces. The first attempt was saved but not caught by Garces, and the ensuing rebound was put into the back of an empty Bruin net.
“I thought we really started to settle in and show some quality after being behind early,” Jorden said. “We have to learn how to manage those first five minutes so we don’t stink it up early, but also then be intelligent enough to have that quality afterwards.”
Then came Iloski. After Maryland’s opening score, the Bruins stormed back with three unanswered goals.
“Any time you score three goals in a game, especially at this level, it’s a pleasure and honor,” Iloski said. “Obviously, without my teammates, I couldn’t have done it. But for me, it’s a huge game confidence-wise (so I can) continue to score goals and help the team.”
In the 18th minute, Iloski delivered UCLA’s first goal off of an assist from his brother, junior midfielder Eric Iloski.
As Maryland defenders were running back into position, Eric Iloski pushed the ball upfield. Looking to his right, he slipped a pass through the Terrapin backline, finding his brother on a well-timed run. Milan Iloski hit a right-footed shot that spun off of Shealy and slowly crossed the goal line.
With the match tied at one, Milan Iloski gave the Bruins the lead when he scored another goal in the 50th minute. Milan Iloski received a pass from sophomore midfielder Cody Sundquist and hit a curler from outside of the box that found the top right corner of Maryland’s goal.
Eleven minutes later, Milan Iloski put the Bruins up 3-1 as he notched UCLA’s first hat trick since 2011. Despite the Bruins’ offensive surge, the Terrapins continued to create chances late into the game.
In the 72nd minute, Maryland cut its deficit to one goal, when forward Brayan Padilla took a left footed free kick and put it in the back of the net.
Down one goal with 18 minutes to go, the Terrapins pushed numbers forward, forcing the Bruins to dig in for the remainder of the game.
“It was a dogfight,” said redshirt senior defender Matthew Powell. “(After giving up the goal) it becomes a situation where you just have to grind it out. It’s not going to be pretty all the time, but sometimes with 10 or 15 minutes left, you just have to grind out the result.”
Maryland managed three more shots before the end of regulation, with Garces saving two of them.
With No. 6 Georgetown set to square off against UCLA at Wallis Annenberg Stadium on Monday, Milan Iloski said the team’s confidence is riding high.
“(Confidence is) through the roof,” Milan Iloski said. “There’s still plenty to improve upon, and we’re focused on Monday now. We’ll enjoy tonight but we need to make sure we’re thankful for this win and ready to get back to work Monday.”