Men's Soccer Snaps Four-Game Losing Streak with 3-0 Win Over Rider
Sept. 15, 2012
PHILADELPHIA - The men's soccer team snapped a four-game losing streak on Saturday evening, September 15, as it shutout the Broncs from Rider University, 3-0. Sophomore Alex Critzos and senior Tim Brennan led the way on the offensive attack for the Hawks, scoring two goals and one goal, respectively. Senior goalkeeper Andrew D'Ottavi was flawless in the net, making four saves and not allowing a single goal to blank Rider. With the win, the Hawks already tie their total wins record from the 2011 season.
Saint Joseph's (2-4-0) did not waste any time striking the scoreboard as sophomore Jake Nelson dished a brilliant pass to Critzos, who floated his shot into the left side of the Rider net just 4:26 into the game.
"Alex played excellent," said head coach Don D'Ambra of his sophomore standout. "It was one of his best games for us this year by far. He's gotten chances previously, and today he did a good job of finishing those chances."
Just two minutes later, Saint Joseph's would find itself back in Rider territory as sophomore Mike Glazer fired off a shot that was blocked and deflected toward Brennan. Brennan rocketed his shot into the left, lower 90, past a diving Rider goalkeeper, to extend SJU's lead to 2-0 at the 6:29 mark. The goal marked the first of Brennan's career.
"Timmy's been working hard all year and his finishes keep getting better and better. Alex and Timmy are a very big part of our team right now. Today it was nice to see them rewarded with goals."
Rider (0-4-0) tallied seven shots in the first half compared to eight shots for Saint Joseph's, but D'Ottavi denied two shots on goal and the Hawks defense blocked another to keep the Broncs scoreless heading into halftime.
Critzos's second goal of the game and sixth of his career came off of a successful pass from freshman Tim Lazorko. Critzos gained possession of the ball and blasted it into the goal to expand on Saint Joseph's lead once more as the scoreboard read 3-0 in favor of the home team at 53:16.
The Hawks would remain offensively charged, recording four more solid shots, one on goal, in the next four minutes of play, and D'Ottavi would make two more saves in the second half to close out the game, 3-0.
Saint Joseph's held the advantage in shots (21-15) and corner kicks (5-4), but the deciding factor was SJU's seven shots on goal in comparison to Rider's four.
"All we've been talking about this week on the offensive end is creating chances and being aggressive in the attacking third," added D'Ambra. "They really implemented everything we've been working on. I am really proud of them for playing with a sense of confidence and converting chances and plays in the attacking third, which is the hardest part of the game. They had a lot of positive energy and it's a great night for them."
The Hawks will return to action next Saturday, September 22, when they travel to Cornell. Game time is scheduled for 4:00 p.m.