Men’s soccer eliminated by Gwynedd-Mercy

By Robert Riches
November 4, 2011

The men’s soccer team lost 3-0 to the Gwynedd-Mercy College Griffins in the quarterfinal round of the Colonial States Athletic Conference Tournament on Tuesday, Nov. 1, at Edith Robb Dixon Field.

The loss eliminated the No. 3-seeded Cavaliers from the CSAC Tournament and is an upset considering that Gwynedd-Mercy came in as the No. 6 seed. It was also just the second time that the Cavaliers were shut out this season.

“I’m disappointed by this loss. We thought we could win this game,” Glen Jaskelewicz, head coach, said. “We played so well against Gwynedd-Mercy earlier this season and I think that we came in way too overconfident.”

The last match that Cabrini played against Gwynedd-Mercy was a convincing 4-0 win on Oct. 12, which was also played at Edith Robb Dixon Field. That was one reason why many expected a win for Tuesday’s match. Cabrini and Gwynedd-Mercy also faced off in the quarterfinal round of last year’s CSAC tournament, which ended with a Cabrini victory.

Griffins sophomore midfielder Tyler Ward opened the scoring in the 43rd minute of the first half with a goal coming off of a rebound, which turned out to be the game-winning goal.

Sophomore forward Dan Panepresso scored just over a minute into the second half off of a pass from forward Trevor Sotell to extend the Griffins lead to 2-0. Panepresso then finished the scoring with a goal in minute 56, which came unassisted.

“I’m disappointed about this loss, I thought we had the team to win [the championship],” Don Irons, sophomore back, said.

Despite the 3-0 score, the game was much closer in terms of statistics. The Cavaliers trailed the Griffins by only five shots and both goalkeepers recorded two saves.

Cabrini had a distinct advantage in corner kicks, as they accumulated 11 while Gwynedd-Mercy only had four. At one point in the first half, the Cavaliers had three corner kicks in back-to-back fashion, to no avail. While they had more chances, they were unable to capitalize on them.

“If that first goal didn’t go in, it would’ve been an entirely different game,” Jake Neary,  senior midfielder, said. “That second goal just deflated us.”

While the Cavaliers had an advantage in corner kicks, they were not able to record a shot on goal until 13 minutes remained in the game. They finished with five shots overall, three of which did not make it on goal.

“We were given plenty of chances this game but did not capitalize on them,” Jaskelewicz said.

For the senior players, this loss marked the end of their Cabrini soccer careers. The senior players won 49 games together, including CSAC Championships in 2008 and 2009. Considering those two championship victories, this result was much less than ideal.

“I would like to thank the seniors Eric CollinsJake NearyJake ThomasJim MattockAnthony Girolamo, and Kyle Johnson for their accomplishments to the soccer program over the years,” Jaskelewicz said.

While the early exit at the hands of Gwynedd-Mercy is a devastating blow to the Cavaliers, there is still a positive outlook for the future. Players such as sophomores Ryan Cerrato and Brett Lockbaum, as well as freshman George Lambritsios, were some of the leading scorers this season and could be key pieces to the puzzle for a 2012 championship run.

Sophomore goalkeeper Eric Nowicki finished with a miniscule goals allowed average of 1.89 and could come back as a key piece to the puzzle for next season as well.

The Cavaliers men’s soccer team finished the season with a record of 9-10-1, finishing in third place in the CSAC with a record of 5-4 against CSAC opponents.

“I guess the better team doesn’t always win,” Neary said.

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Robert Riches

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