HAVERFORD, Pa. – The Haverford College men's soccer team could not have asked for a better start to Centennial Conference play as the Fords (3-2, 1-0 CC) knocked off No. 21 Johns Hopkins Saturday via a 1-0 score on Walton Field. The Fords scored the game's lone goal just 3:26 into the match and that tally would stand up at the end of 90 minutes against the nationally-ranked Blue Jays (5-2, 0-1 CC).
Nick Jannelli scored his fourth goal of the season to pace Haverford on Saturday as the junior now has nine points through the first five games of the season. However, it was some crisp passing from the Fords that put their target forward on the doorstep. Michael Carr dribbled through the JHU defense to create to just enough space to find Peter Baroff on the end line before he played a perfectly placed ball through to Jannelli who beat the keeper to low the corner. Carr is now the first Fords player to record his second assist on the young season, while Baroff's helper was the first of his junior campaign.
In a possession-oriented game overall, Johns Hopkins finished the first 45 minutes with a 3-2 advantage in shots, but Michael Iacono made his only first half save of the shutout bid less than a minute after the Fords went up 1-0 early.
Haverford had several more chances in the second half as the Fords really put the Blue Jays defense under duress over the final 45 minutes. Jannelli nearly made it two goals on the day early in the second half before seeing his direct kick attempt from about 30 yards out travel just wide of the net. Just over 10 minutes later, Carr made a bid to get into the scoring column before the Johns Hopkins goalie denied a solid strike.
The Fords finished Saturday's match with a 9-7 advantage in shots, including a 7-4 advantage during the second half. Jannelli was all over the JHU defense all afternoon with five of those attempts. His final bid at a second goal was denied only with a diving save that was deflected out of bounds by Johns Hopkins' goalie Xander LeFevre during the 68th minute of play.
Saturday's victory marked the first shutout of the season for the Fords and Iacono who played in front of a strong defense throughout the match. Iacono was called on to make four saves in total, with his final stop coming on a close range shot during the 85th minute of match action.
With the first Centennial Conference victory of the season under its belt, men's soccer will venture back into non-conference action this coming Wednesday with a trip to Rowan. That match is slated for a 7:30 p.m. start. Centennial Conference action resumes next Saturday as the Fords travel to defending conference champion Franklin & Marshall.