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Men's soccer seek revenge against Plattsburgh

by Panagiotis Argitis - Managing Editor
Tue, Sep 18th 2018 09:05 pm
Senior forward, Connor Desantis (above), battles with a St. John Fisher player for the ball during the team's first game of the season. Brockport beat the St. John Fisher Cardinals with ease, the final score end at 4-1.
Senior forward, Connor Desantis (above), battles with a St. John Fisher player for the ball during the team's first game of the season. Brockport beat the St. John Fisher Cardinals with ease, the final score end at 4-1.

Following a good run of form throughout the first three games of the season, The College at Brockport men’s soccer team split its fourth and fifth matchup in opposite fashion. The team opened up its home turf account with a strong 4-1 victory over St. John Fisher College but then dropped its momentum and suffered a 1-4 loss to Ithaca College four days later. 

The defeat to Ithaca was uncharacteristic of the team as it had only seen a loss one time previous to that of Ithaca with the addition of conceding not more than two goals from a single game. 

In contrast to its most recent defeat, Brockport’s solidity and overall confidence on the field has been evident, a theme the team is going to use get everyone’s confidence back on track. After its hiccup at Ithaca, the team sits on a 4—2 record as of Monday, Sept. 17. 

Despite netting more goals than scored against, one of the clear takeaways from Brockport’s loss to Ithaca is it’s defensive approach to each game. When facing pressure from the opponent last Saturday at Ithaca, the Green and Gold struggled to back track on its own final thread, which in turn, allowed Ithaca to capitalize quickly and put the game out of reach for the Golden Eagles.

The combination of a shaky back four and a lack of taken opportunities in front of goal made up the huge loss. On a positive note, Brockport’s freshman prospect, Ayub Jeylani, continued the remarkable start to his collegition career by scoring his fifth goal in six games.

In terms of clean sheets and defensive cohesiveness, Brockport was one of the strongest teams in last year’s campaign. However, most of that backside was made up of seniors; seniors who are now no longer part of the team. 

The graduated class of last year’s squad has left a big hole within the team’s defensive capabilities, and although the current team has seen success in its final third department, there is room for improvement. In order to grab the most victories through the upcoming SUNYAC competition, Brockport’s defensive plans require some minor tweaking. 

Head coach, Gary LaPietra, has been experimenting with the selection of the defensive line in order to fill the missing hole. 

“Losing our two starting center backs was tough,” LaPietra said. “I tried out players at different positions this preseason and saw who we needed at the back. It’s a matter of getting used to it and chemistry, and that will come with time.” 

With the aim of getting far into the SUNYAC tournament, the team has got to strengthen all parts of it’s game, and the time is now. The long stretch of non-conference play ended on this week on Tuesday, Sept. 18, with a game against Elmira College. Amidst that, Brockport’s conference matchups will begin this upcoming weekend, away to Plattsburgh State. 

Plattsburgh isn’t unfamiliar territory for the Golden Eagles. Last year, Brockport split the two games played against the side, coming on top 2-0 in the first meeting and falling 1-2 in the second. That loss came in the first round of the SUNYAC tournament and called for an end to Brockport’s exceptional 2017 season. 

The men’s soccer squad will be facing the team responsible for eliminating it from playoff contention, making this upcoming match an important platform to set the tone for SUNYAC play. The Golden Eagles will look to use their emotions to their benefit and shoot for a revenge-filled result.   

“I can’t see us having another performance similar to the one at Ithaca,” junior defenseman, Chris Kinsley said. “We stumbled but we are ready for what the SUNYACs are going to throw at us.”

Brockport fell short of progressing through the conference tournament last season. Nevertheless, the 2018 season has seen development, with a team of collective contribution, looking to hit the target on reaching SUNYAC glory.

The team’s first challenge is set to take place on Friday, Sept. 21 at 4 p.m. against rival, Plattsburgh.

Photo of the Week

Taken by Vincent Croce:
Staff Photographer

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