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Both St. John’s soccer programs suffer 1st conference losses last week

The men and women went a combined 1-3 in a low-scoring, defense-heavy week.

The men’s soccer side (8-3-1 on the season, 3-1-1 in Big East play) has continued their consistency, with strong defense keeping them in games. But over the last week and the previous game (two weeks ago), the Red Storm have scored two goals, given up two goals, and played three overtime games.

The women’s side (6-4-2 overall, 2-2-1 in Big East) has been on the wrong end of a tight games recently, going scoreless last week while giving up two goals in those games.

Recaps below.

St. John’s 0 | #25 Providence 1

The Johnnies fell in heartbreaking fashion at home to open the week against a ranked Providence Friars team.

St. John’s entered the overtime period deadlocked with the Friars with both teams recording six shots in the first half and three in the second. The Johnnies fell behind their counterparts by placing only one of their nine regulation shots on target compared to four from the Friars.

Through another 10 minutes of level soccer in overtime, the Johnnies failed to record a shot while Providence recorded two with one on target. Overtime ended soon after the intermission into the second half with Providence netting the lone goal in the 102nd minute off their second corner kick of the game.

G Luka Gavran played all 102 minutes in net for the Johnnies and conceded the winning goal for Providence — though his performance allowing only one goal in that time is usually good enough for a win. The goal was only the second conceded by Gavran in five Big East matches this season.

Despite recording a loss, the Johnnies continued to be a formidable team having lost only three times this season, twice to ranked opponents.

St. John’s 1 | Villanova 0

St. John’s followed up their double-OT match against the Friars with yet another OT match, this one in Philadelphia, hosted by the Villanova Wildcats.

Although the match did head into overtime, the Johnnies dominated the possession battle all game and recorded a 13-6 edge on shots for the match. The match featured just one shot on target from each side in the first half but leaned in St. John’s favor in the second half with a 3-2 edge.

Similar to the Providence match earlier in the week, the match was over just two minutes after an intermission.

D Lucas Bartlett netted a PK in the 92nd minute as the match’s golden goal after a foul that led to Villanova’s 3rd yellow card of the match. Bartlett’s goal was the second of his career as a grad in the Johnnies’ program and his first from a set-piece.

G Luka Gavran put up yet another shutout, his 7th of the season and 3rd in Big East play to aid in handing the Wildcats their first loss in conference play.

Given the result of their final match of the week, the Johnnies overtook the Wildcats for 2nd place in the Big East, training only the Friars. The Johnnies will look to defend their position and overtake the Friars with one match next week, a home bout against Seton Hall.

Women’s Soccer

The ladies suffered two similar losses last week, both 1-0 against Big East opponents who they could’ve overtaken in conference standings with a win. Like the men, the ladies took on the #24 ranked team and fell with a like score, this time to Georgetown.

St. John’s 0 | Xavier 1

The ladies opened their week following a double OT tie with Butler in Cincinnati to take on the Xavier Musketeers.

From the first moments of the match, the Johnnies weren’t playing to the pace of the Musketeers. Xavier came out firing and collected 11 shots in the first half while the Johnnies only took two.

While the Musketeers only got two of their 11 on target in the first half, they set the stage for their winning goal in the 49th minute. The goal came from a pass into the box that was collected and scored by Xavier’s Ella Rogers.

The 49th-minute strike was the first away goal conceded by St. John’s G Naya Lipkens in conference play in her 2nd road match. Lipkens played all 90 minutes in the net for the Johnnies and recorded five saves during her time.

St. John’s 0 | #24 Georgetown 1

St. John’s followed up a loss early in the week with another one at home to the Georgetown Hoyas on a wet turf in Queens.

The ladies, adamant to not allow another barrage of shots, kept level with the Hoyas recording three shots per side in the game’s first half. The Hoyas would pull away with a 5-2 edge in shots in the second half, but the Johnnies kept the game interesting as five different Johnnies each took a shot, with F Zsani Kajan, M Grace Bernardi, and D Frederique St.-Jean each putting theirs on target.

Sharing the wealth in shots wasn’t as effective as everyone rooting for the Johnnies would hope; Georgetown scored in the 53rd minute off the foot of F Gia Vicari on her 2nd shot of the game.

Vicari’s goal was scored on G Naya Lipkens who played her routine in goal for St. John’s. Lipkens recorded three saves to match her counterpart with the Hoyas in the losing effort.

The ladies will go on to visit Marquette and host Providence College this week as they look to get back into the win column in Big East play.