By Alexandra Parado
Two games for the men’s soccer team means two wins to add on to their undefeated record of 7-0.
The Lions protected their territory this week, hosting Fairleigh Dickinson University-Florham on Wednesday, Sept. 12 and Rutgers University-Newark on Saturday, Sept. 15.
In a non-conference match against FDU, the Lions triumphed 2-0.
The Lions opened the game with four shots, but unfortunately the ball could not seem to find the back of the net just yet. Shots were taken by FDU, but freshman goalkeeper Nolan Cloney rejected the shot to keep the game scoreless.
Neither side could make a goal, but the Lions broke the silence in the 44th minute when senior midfielder Nick Sample took a deep shot from 20 yards out to end the first half. Sophomore midfielder Ryan Vazquez assisted Sample with this goal to put the Lions on the scoreboard.
To start the second half, junior midfielder Michael Maltese sent freshman midfielder Ryan Santos a cross from the left corner, which Santos shot into the net, resulting with the final score.
FDU took 17 shots this game, with four on goal. Cloney repeatedly denied anything that came his way and earned this victory’s shutout.
The following Saturday, the College dismissed Rutgers-Newark after going double overtime and concluded the battle with a close score of 4-3.
This match was a back-and-forth affair between each team.
The first goal was a team effort, Santos found Vazquez and sent him a pass that was immediately shipped to Sample who dispatched the ball into the net from the left side.
The Lions’ lead vanished 53 seconds later when Rutgers-Newark scored a goal. Six minutes later, Rutgers-Newark struck again and put themselves ahead of the Lions. To end the half, Santos aggressively scored to break the lead and bring the score to 2-2.
The second half was filled with intense action, but neither team could hit the back of the net until the 82nd minute, when Rutgers-Newark took a 3-2 advantage.
The Lions continued to fight and scored a goal with four minutes and 40 seconds left on the clock. Sophomore forward Abdullah Afridi sent sophomore midfielder Ethan Mueller a pass from the left side, which Mueller then sent into the goal to secure another tie and go into overtime.
In the first extra period, Rutgers-Newark attempted to score, but Maltese did not allow it.
Early in the second, Vazquez received a cross pass from Maltese which he headed in the back of the net, concluding the game with a wild celebration.
The men’s soccer team is off to its best start since the 1994 season. They hope continue to collect wins this week when they face Drew University in Madison, New Jersey on Wednesday, Sept. 19 and return home to face Ramapo College on Saturday, Sept. 22.