Elizabethtown College pulled out ahead of the Morrisville State College Mustangs with a six goal lead Saturday, Sept. 1 in a strong start to a weekend of matches. Along with the first hat-trick of one player’s college career, the game set the team up for a good season.
The win started to gain momentum six minutes into the game when junior Gilbert Waso scored the first goal assisted by junior Tyler Colasanto.
It was not the only time in the first half that Waso faced off with Morrisville’s keeper Cody Welkley. 16 minutes in, Waso scored another goal. Moving into the second half, Waso made his third goal of the game 1:52 minutes in.
For Waso, the hat-trick was another check mark on a long list of achievements. Waso has accumulated many over his career, including being on the All-American First Team in 2015 and being named the HERO Sports Rookie of the Year in 2015. It is expected and welcomed that Waso played his best in the second game of the year.
The game marked several career firsts for Etown players. The first was sophomore Brendan Burke, who made the first goal of his career in the second half. Shortly after, sophomore JD Haaf scored on an assist fromWaso. Following him was sophomore Pedro Andrade and first-year Zach Kratzer, who both got a goal in just before halftime.
The final goal of the game was made by Haaf with an assist by first-year Graydon Rogers. Morrisville scored one goal in 10 minutes from the end after Morrisville’s Julian Rodriguez intercepted a pass made by Etown. The men’s soccer team departed to gear up for the game against William Paterson University the next day.
Riding off the success of the night before, Etown went into their Saturday, Sept. 2 home game against the William Paterson University Pioneers reenergized. The Jays battled for control of the scoreboard for the entirety of the game, losing by only one point in an overtime play.
Senior Aaron Rathsam scored the first goal for Etown in the first ten minutes with an assist by Haaf. Shortly after, William Paterson’s JP Gonzales scored a goal for his team and tied the game. For the second half, the game centered around Etown’s goal with players fighting to defend the goal.
Etown pulled ahead with a goal made by junior Mitchell Gochnauer in the second half. However, the William Paterson players proved that the game was not finished yet when forward Kyle Adams scored in the last few minutes of the game.
Both teams worked hard to skirt the other team’s advantage for most of overtime, with the final goal being made in the last 30 seconds of the game. Junior Brian Gately blocked a shot which was quickly intercepted by William Paterson’s Brant Sharp, who scored WPU’s game-winning goal.
While Etown was the sharp shooting team against Morrisville with a 26 – 7 shot rate, they fell short in the game against WPU with just 11 shots total. Despite the loss, Etown sports a 1-2 overall win rate and high expectations for future games.
The Jays participated in the Jilly Mills tournament the following weekend, falling to #18 Haverford College and defeating Eastern University
The men will take on Penn State Harrisburg away Saturday, Sept. 16 at 12 p.m.