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Men's soccer falls to third in SUNYACs

by Panagiotis Argitis - Managing Editor
Sat, Oct 27th 2018 03:00 pm
Brockport's sophomore forward Alex Giordano is tackled by a Cortland opponent while dribbling the ball. The Golden Eagles lost to the No.1 SUNYAC squad 2-1 in Saturday's match. Following two losses, Brockport is now set to enter playoffs in the third spot. The quarterfinal match begins at 11:30 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 27 at Brockport against the 3—5—1 Plattsburgh Cardinals.
Brockport's sophomore forward Alex Giordano is tackled by a Cortland opponent while dribbling the ball. The Golden Eagles lost to the No.1 SUNYAC squad 2-1 in Saturday's match. Following two losses, Brockport is now set to enter playoffs in the third spot. The quarterfinal match begins at 11:30 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 27 at Brockport against the 3—5—1 Plattsburgh Cardinals.

Falling off at the last and most crucial stages of the conference season is the polar opposite of what The College at Brockport men’s soccer team has shown this year, but was a reality it faced this weekend. 

Following an undefeated conference record, the Golden Eagles let the opportunity of securing home field advantage and an automatic promotion to the semifinal round of the SUNYAC tournament slip away. With two games left in SUNYAC play, the team failed to capitalize and continue its incredible form, losing both. One against the eliminated contender, Oswego and the other versus number one SUNY Cortland.

The two losses were Brockport’s first of the league campaign, finishing with a 5—2—2 conference record and a third place spot in the SUNYAC standings. Prior to the losses, the team was behind first place by one point but fell to third following this past weekend. 

To put everything in perspective, the Golden Eagles started with a perfect run of four straight victories, followed by two consecutive ties, followed by a huge victory against a two-win team and two losses. Aside from a 5-0 victory against Geneseo, a gradual decline formed in the final stretch of the season, but the two straight losses this weekend were a massive shock for the Golden Eagles, especially the one to Oswego. 

Brockport matched up to Oswego on Friday, Oct. 19 at 3 p.m. posing as the obvious stronger side, but the opposition put up a fight deservent of all three points. The first 45 proved for nothing but the usual from the Golden Eagles, as they dominated and took the lead 13 minutes into the game after freshman Ayub Jeylani broke into double digits with his 10th goal of the season. Despite creating seven more chances than the Oswego Lakers, the team took advantage of its few opportunities and scored to tie it up at one right before halftime. 

Following the break, the two sides battled, trading shots and elbows. The intensity progressively increased as both  Brockport and Oswego looked for a deadlock breaker. The Golden Eagles thought they found a way to the win when sophomore Alex Giordano was brought down in the box. Senior Quintin Volpe stepped up for the PK to only see his shot saved by the Lakers’ keeper. 

With five minutes to go until the end of the second half, Oswego pushed on and scored off a well-taken header that created itself after a sloppy Brockport clearance. The header would turn out to be the game winner as Oswego defeated Brockport 2-1.

Oswego completed the upset over Brockport, and it happened to come right before the Golden Eagles SUNYAC leading, Cortland; a dangerous mental position to be in ahead of a huge match.   

“Sometimes in life you gotta pick yourself up and come in ready to work tomorrow,” head coach Gary LaPietra said. “We took 25 shots, someone has to put the ball in the back of the net and we didn’t do that today.”

And ready to work they were. The Golden Eagles played against the Cortland Red Dragons the day after their first loss. Cortland started the game with authority, scoring at the beginning of the first and second half to claim a lead of 2-0. 

When the match surely looked like it was going to end in Cortland’s favor, Brockport scored two goals ten minutes before the final whistle to come back and tie the game at 2-2. The match went into a brief overtime period as Cortland found a scrappy shot in the middle of Brockport’s box to take a 3-2 victory and maintain its top spot. 

With the conference play finished, Brockport can now focus on the SUNYAC tournament. Despite the late crashing of its heights this season, Brockport has still managed to make the playoffs. While the team regrets not claiming an automatic semifinal placement in the tournament, this year’s group is confident in its ability to go the distance. 

“There is no reason to drop off now,” junior goalie Joey Romano said. “There is too much on the line at this point and we’re not giving up.”

The Golden Eagles will take any chance at bringing the SUNYAC trophy back home and it all starts with a quarterfinal victory. Last season, they versed Plattsburgh and were eliminated after a 2-1 loss. This year, it’s Plattsburgh again. Brockport beat Plattsburgh for its first league victory this season, matching the same result last season. 

With focus and grit, the Golden Eagles will have a chance to progress through and look to bring the 2018 SUNYAC tournament title back to Brockport.