M. soccer falls hard, twice

It was a rough weekend for the men’s soccer team, as the Elis dropped both of their games in a rain-drenched Dartmouth Classic.

The Bulldogs (1-2. 0-0 Ivy) lost to Colgate (3-1-2) 2-0 on Friday, before falling to Fairleigh Dickinson (3-3) 3-0 yesterday.

Defender Max Rhodes ’09 fights for the ball during a win over Maine last week.
Murphy Temple
Defender Max Rhodes ’09 fights for the ball during a win over Maine last week.

In its opening game, Yale gave up two deflected goals to Colgate and, despite dominating the last 30 minutes of the game, was unable to find the net.

The weather was an unforeseen obstacle for the Bulldogs, especially in the opening minutes of the game, according to defender Frank Piasta ’09. Yale had trouble adjusting to the slick pitch, especially since Dartmouth’s Burnham Field is grass, as opposed to the artificial turf of Reese Stadium.

“We had difficulty adapting to the environment,” Piasta said. “We didn’t adapt to it in the way we should have.”

Colgate scored in the 23rd minute on a goal by Alex Weekes, then added another in the 54th on a long strike by Jeff Leach. Both goals took deflections before finding the back of Travis Chulick’s ’10 net. But captain Alex Guzinksi ’09 made no excuses, saying that his team simply did not play its best.

“A goal is a goal, either way,” he said of the deflections. “Our team didn’t play as well as we would have liked. We weren’t playing our A game. You can’t do that in Division I soccer. [Colgate] didn’t get many chances, but they capitalized on the ones they had.”

The Bulldogs were outshot 11-5, with Chulick making five saves in the loss.

In the Fairleigh Dickinson game, the Bulldogs proved more dangerous on offense, but they were once again unable to finish their chances. They got off seven shots — while giving up 17 — and had 11 corners yet could not repeat the success of last week’s game against Maine, in which they scored two goals off of crosses, one of them off a corner.

Early in the game, midfielders Eric Meyer ’11 and Max Rhodes ’09 both had scoring chances, yet their attempts were blocked by FDU goalie Juho Illi.

The game remained scoreless throughout the first half, with FDU grabbing the lead through a Fernando Huthmacher strike in the 58th minute. The Knights added two insurance goals at the end of the game through two goals from Paul King.

Chulick, meanwhile, made a season-high seven saves in goal.

According to Meyer, the offense’s difficulties stemmed from a lack of creativity.

“We struggled at creating chances,” he said. “We lacked a lot of creativity in the final third of the field. We need to work on taking a risk, taking the shot instead of making a pass and passing off the responsibility.”

“The FDU game was pretty hard,” Guzinski added. “Nothing seemed to go right for us. It was a tough game.”

Despite the disappointing performances, Guzinski said, if the team managed to learn from the games, the weekend would end up being worthwhile. The Bulldogs’ next opportunity to prove themselves comes Wednesday night, when they face Stony Brooke at Reese Stadium.

“I hope that our team learns from this,” Guzinski said. “We’re not just going to be given games this season.”

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