PHILADELPHIA - The Saint Joseph's men's soccer squad scored twice in each half to down William and Mary, 4-1, in non-conference action on Sweeney Field on Tuesday evening. With their third win in their last four matches, the Hawks even out at 3-3-0 while the Tribe falls to 0-3-2.
Senior forward Leon Maric paced the offense with two goals while sophomore midfielder Bryce Wallace had a breakthrough match with one goal and one helper and junior midfielder Ritchie Barry added a pair of assists.
How It Happened
• Junior midfielder Daniel Morales drew a hard foul inside the box to set up senior forward Leon Maric with a penalty kick, and Maric converted in the 26th minute to put the Hawks up early, 1-0.
• Just under 12 minutes later, junior midfielder Ritchie Barry fired off a shot that was saved and deflected back into play by W&M's goalkeeper; the ball found open sophomore midfielder Bryce Wallace, who put away his first collegiate goal (38').
• W&M came out of the halftime break firing and eventually broke through in the 69th minute to cut the visitor's deficit to one, 2-1.
• A Barry-Wallace-Maric connection in the 80th minute extended SJU's lead back out to two, 3-1, as Maric completed his second collegiate brace.
• Junior defender David Grana put on a show with some high-quality footwork to gain some space and net the Hawks' fourth and final goal of the night, with just 2:47 to play (88').
Behind the Stats
• SJU held a 9-1 first-half advantage in shots, but the Tribe outshot the Hawks 16-4 in the second half.
• All eight of sophomore goalkeeper Joseph Boehm's (3-3-0) saves came in the second half, as SJU's defense held W&M without a shot on goal in the first 47:19 of action.
• Freshman forward Ryan Hay made his collegiate debut and played 19 minutes off the bench as a sub for Alvin Dahn in the midfield.
• Sophomore midfielder Bryce Wallace played a collegiate-high 29 minutes off the bench as a sub for Daniel Morales and Ritchie Barry in the midfield.
• SJU has now scored seven goals in its past two home matches.
"It was a great win," said head coach Don D'Ambra following the match. "We needed these goals, because we've been shut out and we've been scoreless and inconsistent offensively. We knew these guys are obviously capable of scoring goals, but it just takes chemistry and guys being on the same page and us looking for the right things. I was really impressed with Bryce [Wallace] coming in. He really embraced the opportunity. He scores a goal, he sets up an assist in a tight game . . . They were difference-making plays. So for me, Bryce really stepped in and embraced it. I was proud of him and happy for him. We knew we have an explosive offense. It's good to get it going now, especially with conference play starting Saturday."
"It's a great feeling," said sophomore midfielder Bryce Wallace following his performance. "Coming in, I had only touched the ball once. So to have the opportunity to put one on frame, I was just glad I got it on frame. And obviously, celebrating afterwards with the team was amazing. As the game went on, we kept fighting . . . Leon [Maric] found the back post to give us the 3-1 lead, and that really settled the game down and we were able to put it away. It was just an amazing game overall."
"With games like this, you just have to get after it," added junior Daniel Morales, who drew the foul inside the box that initiated the scoring for the Crimson and Gray. "We just ended up coming in and fighting for every ball. It's Sweeney Field, so it's a completely different atmosphere. It's your home, so you just fight for everything you got. It's just an awesome feeling being out here to fight for everything."
Saint Joseph's opens Atlantic 10 play vs. Duquesne (Alumni Night) this Saturday, September 21. Start time is set for 7:00 p.m. on Sweeney Field.