The UR men’s soccer team wrapped up a six-game home stand this past week with two wins that solidified their place among the elite teams in Division III.
On Saturday, the ‘Jackets played host to eighth-ranked Hobart College under the lights at Fauver Stadium. As expected, the opening half was an evenly matched battle, with both teams struggling to find quality scoring chances. Late in the half, however, Rochester found its stride. The Hobart goalie got his hands on junior Nick Mikolenko’s shot in the 40th minute, but freshman Scott Cady stuffed the rebound in the back of the net for his first goal of the year. The teams went into halftime with the ‘Jackets leading 1-0.
Early in the second half, UR put some distance between themselves and the Statesmen on junior Patrick Ripp’s header off a nice feed from Mikolenko. Hobart battled to the final whistle, but Rochester’s defense buckled down and kept the opposition scoreless.
“I thought we were tough defensively from back to front and we made it difficult for Hobart to gain any sort of rhythm,” head coach Chris Apple said. “I was also really happy with the performance of the guys off the bench – they stepped on the field and made a difference.”
The Nazareth College Golden Flyers came to Fauver Stadium on Tuesday looking to dethrone their cross-town rivals. UR quickly put a damper on the Golden Flyers hopes by scoring just 13 minutes into the game.
Sophomore Dominic Pellingra started the play by feeding a through ball to Ripp. Ripp took it down the left side of the field before playing a cross that found sophomore Sean Hantes. Hantes put the shot away to give the ‘Jackets a 1-0 lead. The goal was Hantes’s first of the season.
Nazareth responded with a goal in the 29th minute on a breakaway by Justin Stevens. The game stayed knotted at 1-1 for more than 40 minutes until senior Tyler Green scored his sixth goal of the year. Senior Jeremy Mann crossed the ball in front of the net and Green headed it in for the game-winning goal.
While the final score was close, the statistics told a different story. Rochester outshot the Golden Flyers 21-3 and earned five more corner kicks. Junior goalie Paco Corbalan was rarely tested during the game and finished with one save.
This Saturday features a showdown of tough teams as 24th-ranked UR visits Sailsbury University, who has just one loss this season.
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