Men's soccer optimistic after split in non-conference

The Geneseo men’s soccer team split a pair of games between Clarkson University and St. Lawrence University on Sept. 5 and Saturday Sept. 6. The Knights easily handled Clarkson with a 2-0 final score, while they faltered against St. Lawrence, losing by a score of 2-1. Despite the outcome, the Knights displayed encouraging performances according to head coach Dominic Oliveri. In fact, he said that the team played worse against Clarkson than it did against St. Lawrence.

“We started off really sluggish. It’s hard to play these back-to-back games and it’s hard not to look ahead to the better team,” Oliveri said. “I think we got caught a little bit looking ahead and we just were not ourselves.”

Geneseo was able to pick up the pace during the second half as junior back Terence McGovern and senior midfielder Patrick Gunty were able to put up tallies on the scoreboard in the 74th and 77th minute, respectively.

“The first half was kind of a defensive struggle,” Oliveri said. “Neither team was doing much and I wasn’t too happy at halftime. The second half was different. We didn’t play great, but we put them under constant pressure.”

Although the Knights were able to get the win against Clarkson, Oliveri said that he thinks that the team played a lot better against St. Lawrence. The Knights controlled the game from the get-go, outshooting St. Lawrence 13-4. Geneseo started the game with intensity, but was unable to break the deadlock as they went into the half 0-0.

“I thought in the first half, we played really well and we had a lot of the run of the play,” Oliveri said. “It was a little unfortunate to be 0-0 at the half.”

St. Lawrence drew first blood as forward Morgan Smith took advantage of a Knights turnover and converted it into the back of the net. Geneseo then clawed its way back into the game at the 81st minute when Gunty curled in a cross to senior midfielder Connor Beisner. While unable to direct the header to goal, Beisner deflected the ball to junior midfielder Jaisen Clark, who was able to strike home.

The game went into a golden goal overtime and while the Knights controlled the possession of the overtime, St. Lawrence midfielder Ross Brandell converted a strike off the crossbar for a Saints win.

The Knights will hope to reverse their fortune against Ithaca College on Saturday Sept. 13. Oliveri said that he will look forward to the upcoming games and that he hopes the team continues their strong play.

“We hope to continue to play well,” Olveri said. “We have to score a little more on the run of play. But I think we’ll be alright. I’m really looking forward to the next few games.”