Men's soccer slays Red Dragons, sweeps weekend series

The men's soccer team won two games at home over the weekend, advancing its overall record to 7-6-1 and its SUNYAC record to 4-3-0.

The Knights defeated SUNY Cortland 3-2 on Friday and continued their success on Saturday with a 2-1 win over SUNY Oswego.

Friday's game began with a goal from opponent Cortland in the 23rd minute. Junior Max Grant finished an assist from freshman Gabriel Morales to put the Red Dragons on the board. The Knights scored the equalizer in the 37th minute off a set piece as freshman Craig Schackner knocked in a free kick from senior Yuta Shimizu. The score remained 1-1 for the rest of the half.

At halftime, head coach Mike Mooney told the Knights that they were "doing a lot of good things" but that they needed to put better shots on goal and more pressure on the opposing defense. In reality, the team came out slow and allowed an early goal in the 50th minute. The play started on a counter-attack from Cortland when junior E.J. Reutemann passed up the field to senior Joe DiGirolomo, who netted his team's second goal.

"I told the boys before the game, if we go down by a goal, let's keep our head in the game," Mooney said. The Knights adhered to their coach's advice and answered in the final 16 minutes of play. Junior Ian Mort scored his eighth goal of the season in the 74th minute off a corner kick from fellow junior Colin Begy. The team tallied its third restart goal in the 89th minute when senior Andy Marzo completed Mort's direct kick to seal the victory. Senior Mike Madarasz assisted the win with four saves in goal.

Mooney said that he was glad his team was able to fight through the game and come back to win. "If we want to go anywhere this season, we need to compete," he said.

Saturday's match-up against Oswego brought the type of competition Mooney was looking for; the Knights came out aggressively and scored in the first 10 minutes of play. Begy sprinted past a defender on the end line and slid a pass in front of the goal to senior Ben Ariola, who finished the point from the six-yard mark. Though Mooney noted a detention in play during the rest of the half, Geneseo remained ahead at halftime.

"We weren't being dangerous enough. We had to play harder in the second half," Mooney said.

Sure enough, the Knights started the half with a quick goal in the 47th minute as Mort finished on his own rebound to put his team up 2-0. Geneseo continued to outshoot the opponents and retain possession for the half. With time running out, the game appeared to be a lock until senior Tony Greene fed a pass to sophomore P.J. Goodwin, who notched the goal in the 88th minute to bring the score to 2-1. Oswego couldn't come up with another chance. Junior Sam Murphy had five stops in goal and Geneseo picked up the win.

The Knights go on the road this weekend, facing Buffalo State on Friday and SUNY Fredonia on Saturday.