September 23, 2002

Men's Soccer Beats Heat, Adelphi With Strong Second-Half Effort

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Make that two…

In above 80 degree heat, the men’s soccer team (2-1-1) notched its second victory in as many games with a 1-0 win over New York state foe, Adelphi University (1-6) on Saturday.

The hero of the day was freshman Andrew George, who tallied his first career goal and Cornell’s only point of the game.

From the onset, the Red was sluggish, unable to get into any type of rhythm, which seniors Doug Allan and Liam Hoban partially attributed to the weather.

“It was difficult because the weather was hot and humid,” explained Allan. “We’re not used to that being in Ithaca, so we weren’t used to that humidity, and it was kind of windy. The first half we just kind of had to fight the elements, bear down. We did a good job of fending off their attacks and fending off the weather and the heat and the humidity.”

Head coach Bryan Scales agreed with his upperclassman that the team was not playing its best soccer during the opening part of the day.

“The first half was very boring,” stated Scales. “We didn’t play particularly well. It was just sluggish, and it wasn’t fun to watch, and I’m sure it wasn’t fun to play in.”

After being outshot 9-4 by the Panthers during the first period, Cornell entered the second half with a changed lineup and a resurgence of energy.

“The second half was a completely different story,” explained Scales. “We were more dynamic, we had more energy, we were running off the ball, and we were playing faster. We had five or six great scoring opportunities, and it was just better soccer, it was exciting. It was good soccer, and it was fun to watch.”

Hoban, the team captain, agreed with his coach.

“The first 30 minutes of the second half we dominated. We played well, got a lot of chances and scored,” he said. “The goal came in the first ten minutes, and then the next twenty minutes we kept going at them. It was a good game.”

The lone goal came from George who found the back of the net at 50:29, beating Adelphi keeper Igor Yatsenko on the far post.

A team effort, the drive started with sophomore Steve Reuter who pressured the Panther defense, forcing the turnover to George who headed it to freshman Pape Seye. Seye found junior Doug Charton open, who in turn sent it to junior Arturo Solis. Solis then crossed the ball back to George who dribbled by two Adelphi defenders and fired a shot into the lower corner.

Scales praised his attackers.

“It was good defense that forced them to give the ball up in a bad area of the field, and then we just played faster than they could react and then the ball was in the back of the net,” he said. “It was a really good goal, and it was great for Andrew. We are pretty pleased, pretty proud of him that he got his first goal, and now, he’s off to a good start.”

George who has been playing well beyond his rookie status couldn’t have been more excited by the tally.

“It was great, especially the game winner in a big game like that,” he said of his goal. “[Hopefully] it will be easier to get my next one now.”

“I’m sure he is pleased about it,” commented Scales. “It’s always good to get a goal when you are a freshman, especially the game winner. We have different guys step up in different games, and he was the guy [Saturday] who stepped up and popped a goal in for us.”

Of the rest of the team, Scales complimented the group.

“Liam held the defense together back there and Pape played well. He came in, in the middle of the midfield and did really well, and Ian Pilarski had a good game in the midfield. After the game was over, I think we had a good feeling about how we finished the game, so we were happy to get a result that was good. We enjoyed it.”

In net, Allan earned his first shutout of the year recording 11 saves.

“It took a little bit of time and effort, but it was rewarding,” he said of the shut out. “The whole defense had to kind of buckle down in the last ten minutes to earn the shutout. We all got it, and we all deserve it, and we’ll see where we can go from there.”

From there, the Red will head to Hamilton, NY to take on Colgate tomorrow at 7 p.m. The team then returns to Berman Field Saturday the 28th for a 7 p.m. match up.

Archived article by Kristen Haunss