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The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

‘Proud of the effort’

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Photo by Christy Selagy, M.A., ’17

Men’s soccer falls 1-0

The Saint Joseph’s University men’s soccer team saw its two-game win streak come to an end on Saturday night with a 1-0 loss to the United States Naval Academy.

“I was proud of the effort,” St. Joe’s Head Coach Don D’Ambra said. “I think we’re getting better. We’re getting smarter as a team… I’m just disappointed they can’t see the benefits of their hard work getting more results.”

St. Joe’s senior Mori Diane notched the first two shots of the game in the 17th minute, just nine seconds apart.

The Hawks earned the first corner kick of the match at 23:58. Sophomore Kyle Lochbihler took a shot off of junior Matt Crawford’s corner kick, but his shot was high. Lochbihler took another shot five minutes later, but the ball didn’t make it past Navy’s goalkeeper, junior Mac Burke.

Navy opened up the scoring after close to 34 minutes of play. Sophomore Ericson Bean scored on a header goal off a corner kick from senior Sam Bascom.

“I feel bad for our guys because it was a game where one play defined the whole game,” D’Ambra said. “Navy capitalized on a corner kick play. One of their guys got a head on it [and] scored. I don’t think they really created any chances after that.”

With less than two minutes remaining in the first half, the Hawks made a drive toward the goal, but Crawford’s shot was lost on Burke.

“We had some pretty good chances in the first half,” D’Ambra said. “I felt like we outplayed them for the most part. They had a good amount of possession in the first half, but nothing really came of it, so we weren’t bothered by it.”

The Hawks were awarded four of their five corner kicks in the second half, but were unable to capitalize on the opportunities. Despite taking six shots in the first half, the Hawks had none in the second.

Regardless of the lack of shots, D’Ambra was impressed with the way his team played in the second half.

“We were pressing them the entire second half,” D’Ambra said. “The second half, they put a great effort in, and we pressed them.”

Navy only took two shots in the second half, both of which St. Joe’s junior goalkeeper Greg O’Connell kept out of the net. O’Connell played the full 90 minutes, making four saves, two in each half.

“We were in the attacking third for a majority of the [second] half, but we just couldn’t convert it in the final third,” D’Ambra said. “That’s where games are won or lost—in that space. We’ve just got to be a little bit more clinical in executing those final passes and getting a head on it in the box. It could have changed the game. One play could have changed the game. We just didn’t get it.”

The Hawks also received full-game efforts from Crawford, senior Bliss Harris, junior Ben Zambetti, senior Mike Stuski, sophomore Eddie McCusker, and junior Kevin Lockhart.

Lochbihler played 58 minutes off the bench, a career high. In his freshman season, Lochbihler played 197 minutes. Following Saturday’s game, he has now played 248 minutes this season.

“He’s the typical kid we try and encourage to earn time, come in, continue to improve and learn—and you get rewarded based on that,” D’Ambra said. “He’s showing he wants to be out here, and he’s getting rewarded for it. The guys know it, so it’s a great example for younger guys and guys that were in his situation. He’s only pushing other guys to get better.”

The Hawks will play at Central Connecticut State University on Saturday, Sept. 21.

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