Men's Soccer Falls to NJIT, 2-0
Aug. 27, 2012
PHILADELPHIA - The Saint Joseph's men's soccer team (1-1) created chances but could not cash in on the opportunities as the squad was defeated by NJIT, 2-0, on Monday evening at Finnesey Field.
NJIT (2-0) only took one shot in the first half compared to SJU's five, but it came on Highlander Cristian Marcel's goal in the bottom 90 of the net at the 30:59 mark of the first half.
Trailing out of the intermission, an opportunity presented itself to the Hawks as a result of a Highlander penalty, but sophomore Jake Nelson's shot on goal was deflected. One minute later, NJIT's Joshua Mercer took a shot that sailed past a diving Andrew D'Ottavi to extend the Highlander lead to 2-0.
SJU would attempt four more shots, with just one shot on goal, before the Hawks ran out of time.
"We need to get better possession in the middle third of the field," said head coach Don D'Ambra. "We tend to lose momentum that way so we need to develop some rhythm and some tempo in the game and it starts in the middle of the field. Today we couldn't establish that. Defensively we had some breakdowns that we need to address and offensively we created some chances and just need to capitalize on the chances we create."
Saint Joseph's outshot NJIT 11-4, but two of the Highlanders' four shots found the back of the net. The Hawks held the advantage in corner kicks, 8-1, but NJIT goalkeeper Lars Maalen-Johansen's four saves on the day made the final difference.
"They outmatched us physically, and I think that was the difference in the game," added D'Ambra. "We just need to regroup. We've been doing a lot of good things and we just need to get back on track and focus on our next match. It's always a learning process and we've been doing a lot of good things. We just need to get back on track in a positive way."
The Hawks will look to regroup at the final game of their three-game home stand on Saturday, September 1 when SJU hosts Saint Francis (N.Y.). Match time is set for 7:00 p.m. on Finnesey Field.