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M. soccer bounces back with win over Cornell

Monday, October 27, 2008

Coming off of two consecutive losses, the men’s soccer team (9-4-1) pulled off a 2-0 win against Cornell (1-12-1) on Saturday night at Stevenson Field. This is the program’s seventh consecutive win over Cornell dating back to a 1-1 tie in 2001. Despite the wind and light drizzle, the Bears moved to 3-1 in the Ivy League and share possession of second place with their next opponent, Penn.

The team got off to a quick start with several great looks on goal in the game’s opening half, as Brown outshot Cornell, 10-3, with a 6-0 advantage in corner kicks. Darren Howerton ’09 scored the game’s first goal in the 35th minute when he sent a shot from the left side past the outstretched arms of the Big Red goalkeeper. Howerton’s goal was unassisted.

The goal was Howerton’s first of the season, adding to his six assists on the year. He currently is tied for second with Jon Okafor ’11 in total points on the team with eight, behind Rhett Bernstein ’09, who has 10.

“We came out and played well,” said David Walls ’11. “We created a lot of chances and scored. It was a perfect response to what we needed after two losses.”

Brown headed into the half with a goal under its belt, the first goal the team has scored in the first half since a 1-0 win over Bryant on Oct. 7. The Bears built off their offensive momentum and continued it into the opening minutes of the second half.

With several flip-throws from Howerton, Bruno had some great opportunities to score. Early in the second half, T.J. Thompson ’10 broke away from the rest of the pack and missed a chance as Cornell’s goalie made a great stop to keep the game close. The team failed to connect on any of the excellent looks but kept on pushing for another goal to put the game out of reach for the Big Red.

Iain Eldredge ’10 scored his second career goal in the 65th minute from the top of the box to put the Bears up 2-0. Okafor recorded the assist, his second of the season.

“Lots of players are getting some playing time, giving 100 percent effort in practice,” Walls said. “Everybody is contributing and pulling in the right direction. Many others like Iain are working hard for the team. That’s what we’re going to need for these last three games.”

Thompson led the Brown attack with six shots, two of those on goal. Paul Grandstrand ’11 came back from a loss to Hartwick to pull off a shutout, moving his record to 3-3-0. The Bears out-shot the Big Red 16-6 and had a 14-3 advantage in corner kicks for the game. However, Bruno was unable to score off of any of the corner kicks.

“There’s definitely still room for improvement on offense,” said captain Dylan Sheehan ’09. “We had 15 corners and didn’t really generate any opportunities off of them. We wanted to work on first contact. We were pretty poor in that area.”

The Bears travel to Penn next Saturday, where they face a tough Quaker team in a must-win game for Brown to keep its Ivy League title and NCAA tournament hopes alive. Brown pulled off a 3-0 win in its last meeting with Penn in Providence.

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