The Red fell to Albany after conceding a go-ahead goal in the final seconds of the game. The Great Danes took the win, 2-1.
Playing conditions were not ideal, as rain poured throughout the game, making the pitch and ball slippery and difficult to manage.
The Red’s starting lineup was largely comprised of younger players in Albany. Freshman goalie Brady McSwain was given his second start. The defensive line came out with an unusual five-back strategy, adding freshman defender Will Citron to the list. Freshman midfielders Kurt Lehmkuhl and Brandon Morales were also given the nod, while players like sophomore forward/midfielder Emeka Eneli and junior forward/midfielder Vardhin Manoj, who normally serve as the offense’s core, did not see action.
Albany players came out constantly pressuring the defensive line, making it hard for build-ups and thereby resulting in long balls to the offense.
The Red struck first when senior forward Brady Dickens slipped the ball past the goalie in the 30th minute, following a perfectly placed inside pass by senior midfielder John Scearce. The Albany goalie miscued the timing and came out of his box a bit late, giving Dickens just the right amount of time to squeeze the ball through the goalie’s legs. Other than that, the first half did not see much action, as both teams recorded only four shots each.
The Red tried to capitalize coming into the second half, but a misclearance by McSwain cost Cornell an equalizing goal in the 58th minute. A low cross from the right side was cleared right into the feet of Albany’s Andrew Weiner, who simply pushed the ball past the goal line.
The next 30 minutes were a clash of high-quality offense. Albany hit the crossbar in a freekick attempt in the 76th minute, and junior midfielder Kepler Despinos answered back by shooting a close shot just over the crossbar a few minutes later. In the 86th minute, the Red shot a long shot near the half-line with an empty Albany net, but Great Dane Micheal Kennedy was able to retreat back and push it just over the crossbar.
With 14 seconds left, Albany’s Kaio DaSilva shot a screamer past McSwain. The remaining time proved inadequate, and the Red bitterly fell to the Great Danes, 2-1.
The Red will return from its disappointing string of away games to regain its posture at home. Cornell will play Brown at 4 p.m. Saturday. The Red will look to maintain its undefeated record at home, along with regaining a .500 winning percentage in the Ivy League.