Men's Soccer Topples League-Leader Temple, 5-2
Oct. 17, 2008
WASHINGTON, DC - The George Washington men's soccer team scored three goals in the opening 16 minutes, including a pair of strikes from junior Andy Stadler, to roll to its first Atlantic 10 victory of the season, 5-2 over league-leader Temple at Mount Vernon Field Friday afternoon.
GW (5-4-2, 1-1-1 A-10) halted a three-match winless streak with the victory -- its first over the Owls since the 2004 A-10 Championship final. The five goals are the most for the Colonials in conference play since a 6-1 triumph against Saint Joseph's in Oct. 2005.
Stadler netted his 11th and 12th goals of the season in the third and 16th minutes, respectively, and senior Dave Leon was credited with a goal in the sixth minute to give the Colonials the early 3-0 lead, which proved to be the difference in an otherwise tightly-contest, physical match.
Redshirt senior Matt Scheer, who finished with four saves in the match, was the catalyst for the scoring outburst. Scheer sent a 70-yard drop-punt over the Temple backline to Stadler, who raced past the Owls' sweeper and lined a shot underneath charging goalkeeper Brett Mollon into the goal just 2:23 into the match.
The Colonials then capitalized on a pair of Owls' defensive miscues to build on their lead. Leon's driving free-kick from the right wing struck a Temple defender on the far post and caromed into the goal at the 5:03 mark for the 2-0 edge. Stadler then pressured an out-of-position Mollon and deflected the goalkeeper's clearance attempt into the net for the 3-0 lead 15:33 into the match.
Temple (6-4-2, 2-1-0 A-10), which sat atop the A-10 standings along with Dayton entering Friday's match, cut into the lead in the 21st minute on J.T. Noone's 18-yard strike. Noone capped a 20-yard run with a right-footed shot from the top of the box to Scheer's right.
The teams' played scoreless for the next 36 minutes, but traded goals in a span of 40 seconds early in the second half.
Freshman Ryan Ruffing was sent loose in the box by a pass from Stadler and slotted a shot past a defender and Temple backup goalkeeper Derek Long for a 4-1 cushion in the 57th minute. The Owls answered less than a minute later by winning a foul in the box and Noone slammed the ensuing penalty kick past Scheer to once again close within two goals, 4-2.
The match, which had already seen four yellow-card bookings to that point, turned even more physical. Temple's Brant Hovington was sent off in the 64th minute and Ruffing was ejected after a second yellow card just two minutes later, leaving both teams a man down.
Rookie Yoni Berhanu punctuated the hard-fought victory with his third goal of the season in the 75th minute. After receiving a cross from junior Erick Perez-Segnini, Berhanu maneuvered around a pair of defenders and drilled a shot past Long from 15-yards away. Berhanu had a chance at a second goal, but Long turned away the freshman's penalty kick attempt with 6:48 remaining.
Temple held an 18-15 edge in shots and 10-4 edge in corners, while GW led in shots on goal, 11-6. The teams' combined for 33 fouls and eight bookings.
Stadler now leads the team with 26 points on a league-best 12 goals and two assists this season. In 43 career matches, he has 52 points on 20 goals and 12 assists.
GW will `Kick for the Cure' to support the GW Cancer Institute against A-10 foe Saint Joseph's Sunday at 3:00 pm. GW soccer is asking fans to wear pink to raise awareness for breast cancer research.