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Men's Soccer News & Highlights

October 17, 2012

Eagles Stumble in Home Test

ST. DAVIDS, Pa.- Eastern University Men's Soccer was 6-0-1 at home entering this afternoon's home test against King's College. For much of the game, it appeared that that unbeaten streak would continue, but the visiting Monarchs scored a pair of late goals five minutes apart to snare an important 2-1 Freedom Conference victory.

Though the Monarchs had won eight of nine matches coming in, Eastern controlled the action of the game early. King's had a great chance on consecutive corners at the ten minute mark, but Niall Croke's powerful header went off the crossbar. 

Out of that action, the Eagles were able to find space behind the Monarch back line for Brandon Beaumont. The junior forward gathered a long ball on the right flank and muscled his way to the middle of the filed before finishing his fourth goal of the year.

With the lead, the Eagles seemed destined to double it on several occasions. Beaumont hit a volley over the bar off a great lofted pass from Mitch Osterhouse, and Mark Labbadia made consecutive stops on shots from Ben Hriscu in the 37th minute.

Despite the Eastern pressure, the Monarchs made it to intermission only down one goal.  The Eagles had a 9-3 advantage in shots through 45 minutes.

The first 25 minutes of the second half was pretty ragged. Physical play escalated as the half continued, and neither team was able to build much of an attacking rhythm. 

Eastern was finally able to settle a bit and Osterhouse again threaded a ball into space for Beaumont in the 71st minute. Labbadia made a leaping save to knock Beaumont's shot toward the upper corner away, and the King's defense closed what seemed to be an open window for a rebound in a flash.

That chance would loom large for the Eagles as the Croke converted a free kick from eight yards outside the box to level the match less than two minutes later. 

With the game level, the Eagles pushed forward with numbers, and that proved costly in the 78th minute. Croke knocked a long ball behind the Eastern defense for a footrace between his forward Chris Nygrean and Jair Saenz. It seemed that Saenz had won the race and was prepared to clear the ball when the two players feet got tangled. Nygren took advantage of the chance to push the game-winner home.

King's (10-3-1, 4-1 Freedom) all but assures a berth in the Freedom Conference Playoffs. The Eagles (7-4-1, 2-3), meanwhile will have to win their final two games and hope for help from elsewhere to have a chance at the fourth seed. 

Photo Gallery

Box Score

Updated: Wednesday, 17 October 2012


Mark Wagner

Mark Wagner

Coach Wagner began coaching at Eastern in 1998 and is the winningest coach in program history.

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