WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Timi Mulgrew penalty kick in the 29th minute of play became the difference in the 1-0 victory over American University for the George Mason men’s soccer team in Washington, D.C. on Sunday afternoon.
By winning the match over American, the Patriots claim their fifth-consecutive D.C. College Cup while improving their season record to 2-0. The Cup was renamed the Kuykenstrong D.C. College Cup this season. American falls to 1-1 with the loss. Colton Amidon, Jannik Eckenrode, Steffen Kraus and Mulgrew were named to the All-Tournament team for their efforts.
"A good result for our young group," commented head coach Greg Andrulis. "We showed enough grit and were able to grind out a good result against a very well prepared and coached American team. Timi Mulgrew carried the offensive load for us today and a solid defensive effort preserved the victory."
Both teams came out shooting in the early stages with Mason launching four shots and American three in the first 22 minutes of play. Mulgrew had his first of two shots on the day blocked in the second minute before Zach Herstek also had an attempt blocked in the seventh minute. Eckenrode had his shot sail wide just 11 seconds after Herstek’s in an early scoring chance for Mason.
American’s fourth shot of the afternoon in the 27th minute also made for Kraus’ first of three saves in the match. After yellow cards on both Eckenrode and American’s Conor Osborne minutes later, Mulgrew was able to convert his penalty kick past Eagles goalie Dylan Hobert for what would be the game-deciding goal. The senior scored his fourth goal in two games, matching his total from last season.
The Patriots would hold American scoreless through the first half before the Eagles came firing with four shots in a 10-minute span in the second half. Two shots from Panos Nahkid were blocked by Mason’s defense while a shot in the 57th minute was able to be saved by Kraus. American out-shot Mason 11-9 in the match, however the Patriots claimed a 4-3 advantage in shots on goal while both teams were even in saves (3) and corners (4). Eckenrode along with freshmen Henning Dirks and Noah Kemble each had one shot on goal for the Green and Gold.
The Eagles had their final chance of the afternoon once again turned away by Kraus when Liam Robley’s attempt in the 77th minute was saved. The Patriot defense held strong for the remainder of the contest for the teams’ second consecutive shutout.
Up next, the men’s soccer team hosts 2013 NCAA Tournament participant Wisconsin on Friday, September 5 at 7 p.m for the teams’ first home match of the season at George Mason Stadium. The Badgers ranked 21st in the preseason NSCAA Coaches Poll.
"We are looking forward to playing at home next Friday for the first home match of the season against a nationally ranked opponent in Wisconsin," said Andrulis.
The game is also the Mason Athletics Game of the Week and Wingstock ’14. For more information, click here.