Rochester, NY – The D'Youville men's soccer team suffered a loss on Friday afternoon to the Nazareth Golden Flyers by the final score of 3-1.
Nazareth was on the offensive in the first 20 minutes of the game, forcing goalkeeper Corey Sikora (Clarence, NY/Clarence) to make several big saves early on in his first collegiate start. In the 22nd minute, Mike Lekanka (Newfane, NY/Newfane) forced the Golden Flyer keeper to make his first save of the game, giving D'Youville their first scoring chance.
In the 27th minute, Dan Tarbell (Clarence, NY/Clarence) nearly scored the first goal of the game as his shot hit the crossbar. Minutes later, Tarbell was back on the offensive with another shot, but it was saved by the Nazareth keeper.
The two teams would continue to trade chances but neither would be able to put the first goal on the board as they went into the half tied at 0-0.
Half number two quickly went south for the Spartans as Nazareth took advantage of two scoring opportunities to build a lead. In the 48th minute, the Golden Flyers broke the scoreless tie with a shot that got by Sikora. Less than a minute later, a penalty kick was surrender and Nazareth doubled their lead in a matter of seconds.
After they scored their first two goals, the Golden Flyers were not done yet. They provided more pressure and eventually broke through again to add a third goal in the 55th minute for a 3-0 lead.
D'Youville would pick up their offense and begin to threaten the Nazareth defense. The persistence of the team's efforts finally paid off in the 81st minute as Hunter Sherman (Lockport, NY/Lockport) put home his first goal as a Spartan to break the shutout for Nazareth. The assist on the goal went to Brandon Pauly (Owego, NY/Owego), his first of the season.
"There were a lot of positive tonight along with a few mental lapses," said head coach Brendan Murphy. "If we can build on the positive moments in the game and learn from the challenges we faced, we can continue to grow as a team."
Sherman led the offense as he scored his first goal of the season after three shots, two of which were on goal. Tarbell matched Sherman in shots and shots on goal to tie for the team lead.
"I'm happy for Hunter getting his first collegiate goal tonight," said Murphy of his top attacking option. "He has had some incredibly narrow misses so it was good for him to see one go in."
On defense, Sikora made 11 saves in his first start of his collegiate career. He faced 14 shots and played all 90 minutes. The back line in front of him held their own, led by sophomore and team captain Josh Hammer (Amherst, NY/Sweet Home).
"Josh was an absolute warrior for us in the back all game as he has been all season," said Murphy.
The team will have a day off before they return home to Dobson Field to face Division II Daemen College on Sunday, September 11th.
Coach Murphy realizes the big test ahead for his team and looking forward to continued growth for his team.
"We are looking forward to another very difficult challenge on Sunday against Daemen."
The game begins at 11am on Sunday.