By Stephen Chott
The Sea Gulls men’s soccer team started slow but finished big as they beat Penn State-Harrisburgh, 3-0. The crowd was filled with parents and students who all came to see the Sea Gulls on homecoming weekend.
SU had plenty of opportunities in the first half, but weren’t able to capitalize until late. In the 41st minute, the ball bounced to junior midfielder Tyler Andrus who fired a rocket from outside of the box that he was able to sneak past the keeper to take the lead.
“The ball came to me and I saw the far post open,” Andrus said, “the wind was going with me so I put a little curve on the ball and put it out of the goalies reach.”
After taking the lead late in the half, the Sea Gulls came out ready to take control of the game in the second half. In the 66th minute, the ball was thrown in on the Penn State-Harrisburgh side of the field and found SU junior back Nathaniel Ebien who tapped it to senior midfielder Taylor Groginski for the easy goal that gave the Sea Gulls the 2-0 lead.
It didn’t take long for the Sea Gulls to strike one final time in the 74th minute, as junior midfielder Justin Lee sent a well-placed pass in front of junior midfielder Leslie Umunna who was able to break away from the defense and place the ball past the goalie for the final goal in the 3-0 win. The play was almost repeated minutes later as Umunna snuck past the goalie on a breakaway but missed right of the net.
Once again the Sea Gulls came out of halftime and had a strong second half. Coach Gerry DiBartolo attributes their strong second half performances to the depth of the team and ability of everybody coming off the bench.
“When we go into our bench we don’t feel like we drop in quality much at all. For a lot of teams who may not have the depth we have, it’s difficult for them to keep up the tempo as we stay at the same level” DiBartolo said.
The Sea Gulls, now 8-3 and 3-0 in Capital Athletic Conference play, will head on the road for their next three games. They return home on October 24th against Frostburg and October 28th against Wesley before CAC tournament play begins.