The College’s soccer team took part in the Stockton Seashore Soccer Classic hosted by Richard Stockton College over the weekend, playing with great success. They won both of their games, improving to 3-1 on the season.
In the first game of the Stockton Classic, the College defeated 11th-ranked Johns Hopkins University 1-0. In the opening period, the two teams matched each other shot for shot, each taking four shots on goal. The score remained tied 0-0 until three minutes after intermission, when junior midfielder Taylor Gregory connected on his second goal of the season, giving the Lions a 1-0 victory.
“Beating JHU was a big win for us,” said senior forward Dan Constants. “The whole team put in a lot of hard work to get the result. I think what stood out was our resilience.”
The defense was especially sharp in this game. Junior goalkeeper Aaron Utman recorded his first shutout of the season. He faced nine shots, making three saves. To help with goal prevention, senior midfielder Ryan O’Donnell and juniors Vince McEnroe and Sean Cunnen each played the entire 90 minutes.
In the second game of the tournament, the squad took on John Jay College. The Lions fought throughout the entire game, coming back from two one-goal deficits to eventually gut out a 3-2 victory.
“This team has great character and there’s fight in every single player,” said Constants. “We know we’re never out of any game and we’ll always fight to get the job done.”
Just 3:56 into the game, the Bloodhounds netted the first goal. The Lions countered with a goal off the foot of sophomore midfielder Dan Lyons from a great pass from Gregory. The Bloodhounds regained the lead at the 24:40 mark, pushing the lead to 2-1. The Lions once again responded with a goal from junior Kevin Shaw less than a minute later.
The Lions headed into the second period tied at 2-2. That changed midway through the second half as senior forward Luigi Moriello netted the game-winning goal, finishing a rebound off sophomore Sean Casey’s shot. The Lions’ defense was able to hold off the Bloodhounds the rest of the way to take home a 3-2 victory.
“We felt like we were the better team for a lot of the game, but we couldn’t find a way through,” said Constants. “For some teams, that can be very frustrating and their play might suffer. But we kept playing our game knowing we could do what we had to to get the win.”
The Lions begin conference play during their home opener on Wednesday against Stevens Institute of Technology.