Courtesy of Hartwick Athletic Communications Department
ONEONTA, NY – Hartwick men’s soccer earned a resounding 3-1 victory at home on Tuesday night against visiting UMass-Lowell (2-8). The Hawks, who improve to 2-5-2 overall, have now won twice in their last two contests.
After a dominant first half with nothing to show for it, the Hawks scored three times in the second half, marking the highest scoring game for the team thus far this season. Nick Hills (Garden Suburb, Australia/U. of Newcastle), Will Broomfield (Brighton, England/Cloud Community College), and Jamie O’Grady (Falkirk, Scotland/Falkirk) scored the ’Wick goals in the deserved win.
The Hawks would finish the match with a lop-sided 18-7 margin in shots. They would also limit UMass Lowell to just a few solid scoring chances through the 90 minutes of action.
“Our team prepared well in training and they executed the game plan very well tonight,” said Hartwick head coach John Scott following the victory. “We bounced back quickly from our last game so it’s a credit to everyone on the team for being focused tonight.”
The Hawks had a strong first half, generating several chances throughout the 45 minutes. Broomfield would test the goalkeeper after only five minutes with a blast from 18 yards. Keeper Chris Maierle would make the reaction save but the tone was set for the half.
A minute and a half later, Tim Crawford (Webster, NY/Webster Thomas) made it to the end line and slipped a short pass to Dean Fowler (Sydney, Australia/Colo HS) in front. Fowler’s shot was deflected out by Maierle for a corner.
With 20 minutes left in the half, a Chris Walter (Amherst, NY/Nichols School) corner kick landed for O’Grady who volleyed the ball down with Maierle making a tough save to tip it over the crossbar.
The Hawks continued to pressure the River Hawk goal a minute and a half later when a Crawford shot from a difficult angle was put wide by a diving Maierle.
Later, another Walter corner would be headed on by Hartwick back Kit Tregear (Brighton, England/BHASVIC). The ball bounced perfectly for Matthew Robertson (Banchory, Scotland/Binghamton University) who sized up the shot and volleyed from 14 yards away but it ricocheted off the bar and out of play.
The Hawks’ final chance of the half came with less than five minutes left as Walter chipped the ball in from the right side which Marc Russell (Glasgow, Scotland/Woodfarm HS) got his head to and sent in toward goal but his shot caught the netting just outside the near-post and the game was level at halftime.
“From the first whistle we were crisp with our passing and only great reactions from their goalkeeper kept the score 0-0,” added Scott.
Hartwick finally was rewarded for its relentless attack 4:24 into the second half. A ball played into the top of the River Hawks’ 18 was left by Broomfield for Russell who played a short pass to Hills inside the box. Hills patiently held the ball, saw his opening, and took a touch before blasting his shot near post to finally solve Maierle for the 1-0 lead.
Less than four minutes later UMass Lowell had perhaps its best chance of the match. A flighted ball to the top of the Hartwick box was headed down by Kevin Zapata for Wuilito Fernandes who was on his side. Fernandes had a great look at goal but put his shot wide of the target.
Hartwick picked up an insurance marker in the 68th minute. Walter got deep on the left flank and played a perfect ball for Broomfield in the box to run onto. Broomfield’s initial shot was saved by Maierle but he was there to pound home the rebound for his team-leading third goal of the season.
The game remained comfortable for the Hawks until under eight minutes remained. A long throw-in from Kyle Garvan was nodded on by Alex Sindoni and bounced through several Hawks where Eric DeSantis got a foot to the ball to push it past ’Wick keeper Mateo Munarriz (Manizales, Colombia/Colegio Granadino) to cut the River Hawk deficit in half.
The Hawks kept the visitors at bay for the final seven and a half minutes of the game but got one last chance after Russell was hauled down just outside the UMass Lowell box with under a minute left on the clock. O’Grady stepped up and hammered in the first goal of his Hartwick career to put the game away with 31 ticks to go. The shot took a deflection off the River Hawk wall and Maierle was unable to keep the ball out.
“We scored two great goals before sealing it late,” stated Scott. “Although the free kick took a wicked deflection, we were worthy of the three goals considering how we played tonight.”
Munarriz would make two saves for Hartwick to get the win in goal. Maierle would finish with five high-quality saves, keeping UMass Lowell in the match.
Hartwick looks to continue its winning ways as it begins Mid-American Conference play on Saturday. The Hawks travel to #9 Akron for a 7 p.m. match. The Zips are 7-2 on the season.