PHILADELPHIA – The Saint Joseph's men's soccer team fell to Rhode Island, 2-0, in an Atlantic 10 conference matchup at Sweeney Field on Saturday night.
HOW IT HAPPENED
• Rhode Island (7-3-1 overall, 4-1-0 Atlantic 10) had the better of the chances early, but it was the Hawks that almost struck first in the 28th minute as Leon Maric had his eye on the upper 90; his well-placed shot was stymied by an outstanding save from URI's Stefan Schmidt.
• The Rams broke through in the 33rd minute on a broken set piece. Peder Kristiansen sent in a corner kick that was punched out by SJU keeper Joseph Boehm. Unfortunately for the Hawks, the ensuing effort by Rohun Kawale caught a deflection and put the away side in front heading into halftime.
• Saint Joseph's (4-8-1 overall, 0-4-0 Atlantic 10) nearly drew level shortly after halftime, but Schmidt denied Maric once again to keep URI in front.
• Stavros Zarokostas sealed the deal for the Rams, taking the ball down the left flank and firing home a low finish in the 70th minute to double the lead.
BEHIND THE BOX SCORE
• Schmidt made six saves for his second clean sheet of the season. Boehm made three stops for the Hawks.
• The visitors held a 15-10 advantage in shots and earned six corner kicks to four for SJU.
• Fouls were relatively even, with the Rams being whistled 16 times and the Hawks 15, but SJU received four bookings to just one for URI.
"It was a tough loss; I think we started off well, we pressed, we created good rhythm offensively," head coach Don D'Ambra said. "The game has momentum changes, and they had a goal on a deflection off of one of our guys, and it goes in the goal and we're down 1-0; Rhode Island's a very good team, they won the A-10 last year, and they have some very good players, and when you give up a goal like that when you haven't been winning, guys drop their heads, and their confidence drops a little bit, and I think that shifted the momentum in the game for us.
"Unfortunately, we couldn't make a play in the attacking end, and they ended up scoring a late second goal...we have to just grind it out and try to get our first win [in league play]. We had a great game against Hartford; they scored to tie it up with 50 seconds left, and tonight there was the deflection...things are just bouncing against us right now. We have to keep grinding, we have to try and stay positive and try to get this next win."
The Hawks remain home for their next match, a non-conference tilt against Drexel on Tuesday night. Kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m.; prior to the game, the Hawks will honor their departing seniors with their annual Senior Night festivities.