CUA picks up hard-fought 2-1 win at McDaniel

WESTMINSTER, Md. – The CUA men’s soccer team ran its unbeaten streak to four games on Wednesday as the Cardinals downed McDaniel 2-1 on the road.  Kevin Duffy scored the game-winner for CUA in the 49th minute as the Cardinals improve to 6-5-2.

CUA out shot the Green Terror 13-9 on the afternoon and had four corners to McDaniel’s three.  There was only one save in the entire match, which was made by McDaniel’s Zach Nibbelink.

“This was a big day for us,” CUA head coach Travis Beauchamp said after the match.  “We’re back over .500 which is big, and hopefully this gives us some momentum and really gets us going.”

He continued, “The first half wasn’t great for us, but we were able to score an early goal and we showed a lot of character.”

Following a corner kick by CUA’s Nick Sylvester at the 6:01 mark, Mike DiMarco took the Cardinals first shot of the match, and it hit off the post.  Only four seconds later, Ian Smith put CUA on top when he scored off a rebound to make it 1-0.  DiMarco assisted on the goal to give the Cardinals the early lead.

The lead was short-lived though, as McDaniel evened things at one with Matthew Gillen’s score at the 16:12 mark.  Adam Dolbey sent the ball in for Gillen from the near wing to the far post, and Dolbey headed it in to make it a 1-1 game. 

Following McDaniel’s goal there were only three combined shots taken for the remainder of the half, with Brian Maher and Ben Fernandez taking CUA’s two attempts.

“That was a tough goal to give up in the box,” Beauchamp said of McDaniel’s first half score.  “But we were able to regroup and get a second goal.”

CUA got its second goal only three minutes into the second half, as Duffy took a centering pass from Hal Cogan and beat Nibbelink to make it a 2-1 game.  “Hal Cogan had a really good day for us,” Beauchamp said. “He sent in a really good ball on that second goal and that was huge.”

He continued, “With the way the game was going we knew we weren’t going to get a lot of opportunities, so it was crucial for us to convert there.”

McDaniel’s David Cross took a shot at the 49:51 mark, but his attempt was high.  CUA came down the other end and Duffy tried his luck with a header, but it too went high.

The second half continued to showcase the defense of both teams with the Cardinals limiting the Green Terror to only six shots in the final 45 minutes.

The Cardinals defense seemed to get stronger as the match wore on, holding McDaniel to a single shot attempt in the last eight minutes of play, as CUA pushed its record above .500 for the first time since mid-September.

CUA will return to action on Saturday when the Cardinals host Landmark Conference foe Scranton at CUA Soccer Field.  The match is slated to begin at 3:00.

“Guys were focused today, they knew what needed to be done,” Beauchamp explained.  “They know that the weekend coming up is very important for us.  We need to find a way to keep it going.  We have the talent, we just have to put the pieces together.”

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