Men's Soccer Recap: Week Six
Oct. 3, 2012
PHILADELPHIA - An overtime goal by sophomore midfielder Jake Nelson lifted the Hawks over Loyola, their only opponent this week, by a final score of 2-1 to end Saint Joseph's regular season non-conference schedule with a 4-5-0 record. With the win, the Hawks now double their amount of wins from the 2011 season and total their combined number of wins from the past three seasons. In addition, Saint Joseph's now has a two-game winning streak for the first time since 2008.
This weekend, the squad returns home to open up Atlantic 10 conference action as it hosts Duquesne on Friday, October 5 and St. Bonaventure on Sunday, October 7.
The Hawks are 6-10-0 all-time against Duquesne. The Dukes are 3-7-0 on the season and have dropped their last four games. Saint Joseph's is 8-11-1 all-time against St. Bonaventure, having last defeated the Bonnies on junior defender Brendan Reilly's overtime goal in 2011. St. Bonaventure is currently 2-8 with a match against Temple on Friday.
The Hawks will hit the road next weekend for games at Massachusetts on Friday, September 12 and Rhode Island on Sunday, September 14.
Bold Back Line: Defense played a crucial role in Saint Joseph's win over Loyola last Saturday. In the first half alone, the Greyhounds held the edge in both shots (9-8) and corner kicks (6-4), but the defense, including but not limited to juniors Jake Mulinge and Reilly, sophomore Tommy Brooks, and freshman Tim Lazorko, shut down all attempts on goal in the opening half. With three blocks in the first half and four in the second, the back line allowed for increased offensive possession, which equaled increased offensive opportunity for the Hawks.
Making Moves: Saint Joseph's continues to climb in NCAA rankings. For games played through September 30, the Hawks have jumped in the following categories: won-lost-tied percentage (42 places), shutout percentage (32 places), team goals against average (26 places), save percentage (19 places), total goals (17 places), total points (11 places), scoring offense (eight places), and total assists (four places). Nationally, Nelson ranks 92nd in assists per game while D'Ottavi ranks 58th in saves per game and 55th in total saves.
Sharp Shots: The Hawks have increased their shot production in the second half of the non-conference part of the season. In the first five games of non-conference play, the Hawks went 1-4 and fired off 54 total shots, an average of 10.8 shots per game. In the past four games in which the squad has posted a 3-1 record, SJU has rocketed 70 total shots, an average of 17.5 shots per game, a near seven-shot increase from the opening half of non-conference play. More so, the Hawks have increased their shot on goal numbers, improving from 4.4 shots on goal per game to six while decreasing opponents' numbers from 6.6 to 5.75.
Weekly Winners: Lazorko had a standout week for the Hawks, netting his first collegiate goal on a game-winner over Bucknell and scoring the goal to push the Hawks into overtime against Loyola. For his efforts, Lazorko was named both Atlantic 10 and Philadelphia Soccer Six Rookie of the Week for the week of September 24-30. For his game-winning assist to Lazorko against Bucknell and his overtime goal against Loyola, Nelson was nabbed as the Philadelphia Soccer Six Player of the Week.