HAVERFORD, Pa. – The No. 8 Haverford College men's soccer team scored just 1:16 into the match on Wednesday afternoon against Stevens. That offense proved to be all the Fords (4-0-1) needed in the 1-0 win over the regionally-ranked Ducks (3-3) on Walton Field.
The Fords lone tally on the scoreboard came on their first offense attack of the afternoon. Earning a corner just over a minute in, Haverford had a multitude of opportunities as both Michael Carr and Nick Jannelli got on the end of consecutive chances as the ball ricocheted into the box. However, it was the header of Russell Nicholson that ultimately knocked in Wednesday's only offense.
Nicholson's goal was the eighth of his career. One of three senior captains on the team, Nicholson has tallied the game-winning goal on five of his eight career goals. Carr and Jannelli were rewarded with the double assist to give them each their first helper of the season. Carr now has eight career assists while Jannelli has four helpers during his career.
Haverford's first goal came as part of an opening 45 minutes where the Fords controlled the tempo from whistle to whistle. The first half ended with Haverford holding a 7-1 edge in shots and 5-0 advantage in corner kick attempts. However, the second half saw Stevens level the final statistics with 13 shots and eight corner kicks during the final 45 minutes of play.
Each side had a pair of chances bounce off the goal in the second half as Jannelli hit the post during the 68th minute of play. Just four minutes later, the unlucky bounces evened out as Stevens hit the cross bar in the 72nd minute. Even with the constant traffic in front of his net, Jeremy Astesano needed to make just two saves to record his third shutout of the year and run his season record to a perfect 4-0. Astesano is now 11-0-3 during his career with four clean sheets.
Jannelli finished the night with a team-best three shots, putting one attempt on goal. Max Krieg, Sykes Cargile, and Carr each had two shots and put all of those attempts on net. Aaron Henry finished his night with nine saves for the Ducks to keep his team in the contest.
Men's soccer will now turn its attention to the Centennial Conference opener this Saturday as the Fords travel to Baltimore to take on Johns Hopkins in a 7 p.m. start. The Blue Jays are another regionally-ranked team and are currently off to a 5-0 start to their young season.