The Men’s Soccer team split two games last weekend while participating in the Vassar Invitational in Poughkeepsie, New York. On Saturday, Sept. 6, the Hawks defeated the Farmingdale State College Rams 3-1 to record their first win of the 2014 regular season.The Hawks were later shutout the next day by the Elms College Blazers, 1-0.
Second-year forward and midfielder Sam Wasser, who was subbed into the first game in the 16th minute, netted the first goal for the Hawks in the 18th minute.
Hawks first-year forward Gino Scardino, who was subbed into the game for Wasser in the 36th minute, scored a pair of goals, one in the 39th minute and the other in the 66th minute. Fourth-year Captain Brian Spina tallied an assist on Scardino’s second goal. Fourth-year goalkeeper Andres Montoya played all 90 minutes for the Hawks and recorded two saves.
Head Coach Gene Ventriglia said the Rams had previously upset the No. 12 ranked team in the nation, Stevens Institute of Technology on Aug. 29.
Spina said the Hawks started the game “a little shaky,” but the win said a lot about the character of this year’s team.
In the second game of the weekend, first-year forward Chris Dabkowski scored the lone goal for Elms College that would be enough for the win.
Fourth-year goalkeeper Steven Domino played all 90 minutes for the Hawks and recorded three saves in the loss. Scardino had netted a goal for the Hawks. However, it was void as a result of a late offsides call.
Ventriglia attributed the team’s intensity to the newcomers on the roster.
“I think the newcomers are really helping the team,” he said. “They make our team deeper, as we used a lot of substitutes during Saturday’s game.”
Ventriglia also said the team can put so much pressure on an opponent, that something positive will happen.
“You can break down an opponent,” he said. “Going into the second half I was feeling very comfortable. I told them at halftime ‘we’re going to do it.’ They didn’t come out with the same play. I think it may have been the humidity on Saturday that may have taken a lot out of them.”
Despite the losing record to start the season, Ventriglia still feels confident with the team. The Hawks are working on playing a 90 minute game and improving their psychological strength, he said.
“To me, it’s the mental strength, because that’s where they get tired, mentally, and they lose focus for a little while,” he said. “It has cost us the two games that we lost. You’re always going to have periods of highs and lows, but you have to be within a certain range. We were up and down against Elms and that’s why we gave up the goal. We were clearly the better team, but you have to play for 90 minutes. That’s what we’re working on.”
Spina said the team did not come out and play the way they wanted to against the Blazers.
“In the first half we had our chances and should have finished a couple times but we did not and unfortunately it came back to haunt us,” he said. “The second half [Elms College] came to us and we couldn’t seem to string together multiple passes and it really took us away from our game. We’re looking to really move forward from that game and put it behind us.”
The Hawks who now have a record of 1-2, are preparing for their home opener as they take on Hunter College this Saturday, Sept. 13 at 1 p.m. on New Turf Field.