About 15 minutes into the Cornell men’s soccer team’s first game of the Bradley Classic this past weekend, disaster struck. Junior forward Steve Reuter, the Red’s linchpin on offense, went down with a torn ligament in his ankle. He would not return. The Red never recovered and went on to lose that match, 3-0, against Coastal Carolina University. Cornell would also lose its game against Florida Atlantic University, 2-1, the following day.
“Reuter will be out for about two weeks,” said men’s soccer head coach Bryan Scales. “It hurts us because he’s our most dangerous attacking guy.”
After Reuter injured himself on Friday, sophomore Pape Seye came in to replace him. Seye and freshman forward Nick Leonard will likely share time while Reuter is gone for the next few games.
“Pape came in and did a good job,” said Scales.
Unfortunately for Cornell, its offense was not necessarily the problem this past weekend. The Red gave up five goals between the two games, and as the coaching staff has noted, defensive lapses are becoming all too common for this squad of talented players.
“The fact that we continue to give up goals indicates that something’s not quite right,” explained Scales. “Maybe we aren’t organized enough or we haven’t played enough, but we’ll take a look at the tape and go over it with the guys.”
Coastal Carolina was certainly the tougher of the two games, and the result was therefore not too surprising. Coastal’s top forward, senior Joseph Nguenya, took part in all three goals that the Chanticleers scored on Friday.
After losing to Coastal, Cornell looked to bounce back against Florida Atlantic. After giving up a goal just under 10 minutes into the game, Cornell came back at 48:46 of the match when freshman forward Ryan Imamura scored his first collegiate goal to tie it at 1-1. Later in the second half, the Red scored another goal, but it was waved off on an offsides call. FAU forward Kristoffer Aarskog scored in the 85th minute to give the Owls the 2-1 win.
“I thought that there were quite a few bright spots that we had in both games,” said Scales. “We had a goal that was disallowed on a phantom offsides call after we were tied 1-1 [against FAU], which cost us.”
When asked about Imamura’s first goal, Scales replied, “He was excited and we were happy for him.”
The Red will have to take these two games as a lesson if it wants to improve from here on out. With Reuter gone for the next couple of weeks, the Red will have to have several of its other key players step up. Reuter was Cornell’s leading scorer so far this season.
The Red will play its next match against American University this Saturday at 3:30 p.m.
Archived article by Michael Pandolfini