Syracuse men’s soccer grinds out tie against Colgate
Syracuse grinds out tie against Colgate
Syracuse men’s soccer could not regain winning form on Monday night as the Orange labored to a 1-1 tie against out-of-conference foe Colgate.
“These are tough games to turn around,” Head Coach Ian McIntyre said.
The game was a physical affair with limited midfield play. The frigid conditions and stiff defending from both teams meant that the game was a little ugly at times.
“Initially, we were trying to get the ball wide,” McIntyre said. “We were just lacking a little bit of quality in connecting that extra pass.”
A goal-less first half and a fairly chance-less start to the second half made the crowd restless. While Colgate failed to create a significant chance in the opening part of the game, the Raiders struck first with a goal from freshman Ryan Krueger in the 69th minute. The ball fell to the forward in the six-yard box, and after putting his initial shot off the bar and forcing Syracuse goalkeeper Hendrik Hilpert into an attempted save, Krueger tapped the ball into the empty net.
The Orange struggled to break down a stingy Colgate defense that has only allowed two or more goals in a game one time this season. However, the Colgate goal spurred Syracuse, and the Orange found an equalizer less than 10 minutes after conceding Krueger’s tally.
“We keep pushing,” Coach McIntyre said. “We keep fighting and scrapping.”
The goal came on a set piece. Hugo Delhommelle whipped a dangerous ball into the box from a free kick in the deep left of the field and defender Sondre Norheim rose over the towering Raider defense and nodded it past goalkeeper Jacob Harris.
For the remainder of the 90 minutes, play reverted back to the physical style from earlier, and neither team could find a winner. Extra time was more of the same with a few good chances for both sides. The best of which came from Colgate, forcing a low save from Hilpert with about three minutes remaining in the second extra period.
Depending on the viewpoint, there were positives and negatives for an embattled Syracuse team. The return of sophomore Tajon Buchanan in the second half helped improve Syracuse’s attacking options and made the offense more potent. A tie against a Raiders team that has beaten ranked opponents this season (No. 24 Vermont) and made the Sweet 16 last season looks good on paper.
On the flip side, this is a team that the Orange handily beat 2-0 last season, and Syracuse was thought to have improved this year.
The Orange still struggled to create clear-cut chances. This will have to change with an important two-game road trip against conference foe Virginia Tech and defending Mid-American Conference Champion Akron.
“I’m sure Coach Brizendine from Virginia Tech is delighted right now,” Coach McIntyre said. “That this game went to extra time and was a slugfest.”