YORK, PA – York College sophomore Antonio Bua knew that darkness was descending quickly on Graham Field. So the forward took it upon himself to send the Spartan faithful home happy as he notched the game's lone goal in leading the Spartan men's soccer team to a 1-0 victory over Capital Athletic Conference rival Stevenson on a stormy Wednesday in York.
The Spartans have now won two straight as they improve to 6-3 overall and 1-0 in the conference. The Mustangs, who have now lost two straight, fall to 6-2 overall and 0-2 in the league.
Bua's heroics were possible thanks to a suffocating Spartan defense that kept the potent Mustang attack in check. The CAC's leading goal scorer, Ansger Otto, was held to two shots as he was held without a goal for just the second time in eight games this season. Otto came into the contest having already recorded 11 goals and three assists for a conference best 25 points.
The game featured an 86-minute lightning delay 9:06 into the match. Once the teams returned to the pitch, the Spartans carried the play as they outshot the Mustangs 14-2 in the opening 45 minutes of play. York had a golden chance in the 23rd minute as Bua hit a brilliant cross into the box that found the foot of Chris Weaver. Weaver's shot in front of the goal sailed high as the game remained scoreless throughout the first half.
The Mustangs had their best scoring chance just 2:45 into the second half as Roderick Linkonko beat the Spartan defense to the end line and hit a beautiful cross in front of the Spartan goal mouth. Otto was streaking onto the other end of the pass but the Mustang duo just missed connecting as the ball trickled out of bounds along the far sideline. The Spartan defense stiffened and allowed just one Stevenson shot in the second half.
Bua's game-winner came in the 79th minute as he received a pass from Cody Pearson, settled the ball and drilled a shot into the back netting for the game's lone tally. The goal was Bua's second of the campaign.
Spartan sophomore goalie Jesse Derksen registered his second straight clean sheet as he was forced to make just one stop in the win. The shutout is his fourth of the year and the fifth for the Spartan defense. Ryan Flannelly recorded five saves in goal for the Mustangs.
York finished the match outshooting Stevenson 25-3 while they also held a 6-1 margin in shots on goal. The Spartans also recorded a significant 9-0 bulge in corner kicks for the match.
York takes to the road on Saturday when they travel to St. Mary's to face the Seahawks in a Capital Athletic Conference contest. Kick off is scheduled for 3:30 pm in St. Mary's City, Md.
Antonio Bua photo courtesy of Zach Clabaugh www.sharpedgefoto.com