The Gannon University men’s soccer team enjoyed a successful weekend in Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) action, holding two opponents scoreless and coming out with a victory and a tie.
The Knights posted a 2-0 victory over Shippensburg University Friday at McConnell Family Stadium before finishing in a 0-0 tie – the first of its kind since 2014 – with Slippery Rock University Sunday on the road.
The win and tie left Gannon with an overall mark of 4-4-1 and a PSAC record of 3-0-1 going into Wednesday’s 4:30 p.m. matchup at California University of Pennsylvania.
Challenging Shippensburg at home Friday, the Knights’ bold offensive play led to an early advantage.
In the game’s 11th minute, Alex Lee Yaw fired a quick shot that ricocheted off Shippensburg goalkeeper Matt Harder and neatly in front of the Knights’ Mathias Krigbaum for an easy open-net goal. It was Krigbaum’s fifth goal of the season.
The Raiders’ offense couldn’t compare as they closed the first half with only one shot on goal against Gannon keeper Jorge Hernandez while the Knights collected seven.
Going into the second half, Gannon attacked the Raiders with three additional shots on goal—with Harder barely deflecting one shot by Lee Yaw and another shot sailing from 20 yards into the upper corner of the net.
Setting up the Knights’ second goal in the 74th minute, Krigbaum finessed a pass across the Raiders’ defense, landing perfectly at Eduardo de Bonis Envinoso’s feet and quickly into the goal.
Hernandez concluded the match with his second shutout of the season and boasts an impressive 72 percent save percentage so far this season.
Billy Colton, a Gannon assistant coach, complimented the Knights on their performance.
“The team has been very focused and [has had] a strong mentality in recent games,” he said.
The Gannon coaching staff has liked what it has seen of Gannon’s defensive play recently, noting that it has boosted the team’s confidence and will be a centerpiece of the Knights’ game plan from here out.
Adding another goal and assist to the stat sheet, Krigbaum leads the Knights in goals with five and also reigns as the Gannon Athlete of the Week.
Concluding the match with 17 shots vs. Shippensburg’s five, the Knights continued to flex their offensive power in the PSAC.
The Knights stood at 3-0 in the PSAC following this big victory as they traveled to Slippery Rock University on Sunday for their fourth conference match.
Both the Rock and Knights played very competitive defense throughout the match, leading to a frustrating double overtime that ended in a scoreless tie.
Krigbaum nearly drew first blood with a dagger of a kick that was just barely snatched away by the Rock’s goalkeeper, Jonathan Sharp, in the sixth minute. The Rock attempted to strike back at the Knights at the 19-minute mark with Liam Gasparotto’s swift kick that was easily blocked by the Knights’ defense.
The Knights and the Rock battled hard going into the end of the first half as four shots by Gannon and six from Slippery Rock all missed the mark. The second half mimicked the first as the scoreless stalemate stretched into overtime.
With the Knights’ George Stannard managing the only shot of the first overtime, the defensive clash continued along with increasingly competitive play.
The second overtime had two shots from Gannon’s Lee Yaw and Sergio Kobowane. Ending in a tie, the Knights finished the match with seven shots on goal versus the Rock’s four.
The Knights remain undefeated in the PSAC and the defense has maintained strong play, as it hasn’t allowed a single goal in their last two matches— spanning more than 200 minutes collectively.