Springfield, Mass. - September 9, 2017 - Junior defender Brad Deckel (Lansdale, Pa.) found the back of the net with 8:01 to play in the first overtime period to lift the Springfield College men's soccer team to a 1-0 win over local foe Westfield State on Saturday afternoon at Brock Affleck Field.
Coming into the season receiving votes in the United Soccer Coaches Division III Preseason National Rankings, Springfield College picked up its third win of the season to improve to 3-0, while Westfield State is now 2-2 overall. The Pride held a 25-6 shot advantage in the win, including a 18-3 edge in the second half of play. The Pride was also awarded seven corner kicks to the Gulls' three.
In net for the Pride, Stewart Frank (Pittsford, N.Y.) made four saves in the win, while his counterpart, Sean Moore (Feeding Hills, Mass.) made six stops and took the loss.
The first half of Saturday's contest proved to be a chippy one, as Westfield State came away with a pair of yellow cards towards the end of the stanza. Although the two sides remained scoreless after 45 minutes, Springfield College held a 7-4 shot advantage, including its best chance of the period when Keon Haji (Shrewsbury, Mass.) touched a ball to Leland Malloy (Bethlehem, Conn.), who sent a beautiful through ball to Christian Schneider (Douglas, Mass.), but the junior was called offsides before getting the opportunity to finish the chance.
Westfield State turned up the pressure in the early stages of the second half, as the Owls sent two balls past the Springfield College back line, which were both called offside to stymie the effort from the visitors.
Springfield College got its best chance of the second half with 16:16 remaining as Haji got loose and made a run to his right, before quickly cutting back left and putting one on cage that ricochet off the left post before rolling out of bounds. Just 3:31 later, Nick Fontana (Marshfield, Mass.) had a great look at the cage, but missed just wide left. With under eight minutes on the clock, Xavi Arroyo (Concord, Mass.) played a ball into the box that was one-touched by Schneider across the goal mouth to Cam Powell (Housatonic, Mass.), but the defender's header chance went just high of the cage.
Westfield State had a great opportunity to pick up the game-winning strike with 5:07 left in the contest as Kieran Moriarty (West Springfield, Mass.) gained control of the ball and fired one on cage, which was stopped by Frank with a diving effort to keep the Owls off the scoreboard, sending the game into overtime in a scoreless tie.
Just one minute into the overtime period, Deckel found the back of the net to lift the Pride to a 1-0 win.
Up next, Springfield College will hit the road and play an out-of-region contest against Stevens Tech on Sunday, September 10 at 7:30 p.m.