With Big East conference play now in full swing, another busy weekend for St. John’s soccer ended with a dominant 3-0 win for the men’s team over Xavier, while an upset-minded St. John’s women’s team fell just short at No. 15/12 Georgetown, losing 1-0.
The men hosted Xavier at Belson Stadium on Saturday night. The Musketeers came in ranked 23rd in the College Soccer News poll, but still just shy of the Coaches Poll Top 25.
The Johnnies got going early and often with all three goals coming in a span of just over 25 minutes. The first goal came from freshman Jack Shearer in the ninth minute as a scramble on the goal line was tapped in by the Pennsylvania native.
Just 15 minutes later, Bjarni Rognvaldsson played in a picture perfect cross that found Alistair Johnston’s head who calmly headed it back across the face of goal for a lurking Shearer to tap in.
The moment of the game for the Johnnies came in the 36th minute when Wilhelm Nilsson’s standard long ball was flicked on by Italian striker Filippo Ricupati. He then beat Xavier goalkeeper Zachary Nelson to the loose ball, and cleverly hit the ball with the outside of his boot to find the side netting.
The Musketeers finished themselves off with nine minutes to play in the first half when Xavier fullback Curtis Hansford challenged Rafael Bustamante for a loose ball, inadvertently going studs up into Bustamante’s face. The referee then produced a red card.
Midfielders Zachary Shiposh and Benny LaFortune patrolled the middle of the park for the Johnnies all night, preventing the dangerous frontline of Xavier from establishing any ounce of rhythm.
The result against at home against a ranked opponent should come as no surprise; last year, the Red Storm tied Creighton 1-1, who was ranked 10th, and they beat 14th ranked Butler 2-1 in Queens.
For their performances, The Big East named David Enstrom (Defensive) and Jack Shearer (Offensive) as the conference players of the week. With the win, the team is now on a four game win streak and unbeaten in their last five. This is the team’s best record through eight games since 2013, when the team last made the NCAA tournament.
On the women’s side, Antonia Tammaro’s eight saves were not enough to hold enough the 15th ranked Hoyas. As has been the case with most of the St. John’s games this year, the defense held tough but one breakthrough late in the game proved costly.
Georgetown forward Caitlin Farrell stepped in front of a goal kick taken by Tammaro to clear the ball off the line, and while Tammaro was out of position, Farrell put the shot in the back of the net from distance.
Georgetown forced the Johnnies into a strong defensive performance all game long, as the potent Hoyas offense earned five first half corners. Tammaro’s defense held strong after Georgetown led the shot advantage 7-1 in the first half.
As the men are now on a four game win streak, the women are on a four game losing streak. They’ll look to end the skid on September 28th against Creighton at Belson Stadium. That game is set for a 7:00 P.M. kick, and can be seen on the Big East Digital Network.
The men look to continue their roll tomorrow night as they close out non-conference play at Lehigh at 7:00 P.M.