October 16, 2013

Spartans Blank Seahawks to Notch Ninth Straight Win

YORK, PA – The York College men's soccer team kept rolling as they blanked St. Mary's College 3-0 in a Capital Athletic Conference match on Wednesday in York. The victory runs the Spartans' win streak to nine as they improve to 13-1 overall and 5-0 in the CAC. The Seahawks fall to 4-6-2 overall and 1-2 in the league.

The win keeps the Spartans perfect as they head into Saturday's showdown at fellow league unbeaten Salisbury.

The Green and White started off slowly as the Seahawks had the game's first great chance. St. Mary's Zach Fontenot hit a blistering shot that appeared to be ticketed for the top shelf just under the cross bar past a stretched out Brad Schmidt (Moorestown, N.J./Delran). Fortunately for York, Fontenot's shot skimmed over the top of the bar for a Spartan goal kick. That would prove to be the Seahawks' best chance to get on the board.

The Spartans countered shortly after Fontenot's near miss as Ryan Donahue (York, Pa./York Suburban) collected a loose ball on the sideline. He fired a pass to Chris Weaver (Baltimore, Md./Archbishop Curley) who one-timed a pass into the box where senior Jake Hower (Lake Forest, Calif./El Toro) redirected the pass past a diving Austin Brown, giving York the 1-0 lead. The goal was Hower's fifth of the year and came just 8:32 into the game.

York added to the lead less than ten minutes later and Hower was in the middle of the action again. Hower picked up the ball outside the Spartan defensive box, dribbled forward and launched a long pass to a sprinting Brendan Saberton (Wilmington, Del./Salesianum). Saberton slipped past the Seahawk defense, collected Hower's helper and ripped the shot across the goalmouth inside the far right post for the 2-0 Spartan lead. The goal was his fifth of the year and came at the 17:16 mark.

The Spartans continued to push the tempo as they were quicker to the loose balls and did a good job of possession over the final 28 minutes of the half. While the Spartans didn't score, they kept the pressure on Brown and the Seahawk defense.

The second half was much of the same as they peppered the athletic St. Mary's keeper with shot after shot. Brown rose to the occasion on numerous occasions in the second half as he kept St. Mary's deficit at two for much of the stanza.

York tacked on their final goal in the 86th minute as Weaver blistered a shot that Brown made an acrobatic save on. Fortunately for York, Greg Bechard (Newark, Del./St. Mark's) collected the rebound and headed home the goal into the upper left 90, giving York the 3-0 lead.

The Spartans finished the game with a big 34-7 advantage in shots including a 16-3 margin in shots on goal. The Spartans also held a 9-1 bulge in corner kicks.

Schmidt earned his sixth shutout of the year as he registered three saves for the day. Brown was fantastic for St. Mary's as he notched 13 stops for the guests.

The Spartans take to the road on Saturday to face Salisbury in a battle of nationally ranked squads. The Spartans are fourth in the NSCAA Coaches poll and second in the d3soccer.com poll. The Sea Gulls are fourth in the NSCAA South-Atlantic regional rankings and 16th nationally in the d3soccer.com poll.

Game time on Saturday in Salisbury is set for 2:00 pm. 

Jake Hower photo courtesy of David Sinclair

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