By Madeleine Balestrier, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Penn State Nittany Lions (1-3-2, 0-2-0 B1G) secured their second win of the season in a team effort against the Detroit Mercy Titans (4-1-1, 1-1-0 Horizon). The Blue and White's offense woke up under the lights of Jeffrey Field as they took home the win with a 2-goal shutout.
"Well you know if you just keep fighting and fighting and fighting and keep doing the right things, things are going to get better for you," said head coach Bob Warming. "It's been the theme of our team we've been fighting, we've been trying and trying and trying but haven't been getting results so the guys feel really good about tonight."
Supporting head coach Bob Warming's emphasis on team support and unity heading into Wednesday night's match, Jeffrey Field was a carousel of new starters, faces, and substitutes as the Blue and White banded together for a much needed win.
"They are a team which means that it is one of the last times in your life that you are actually going to have a group of people that support you," said Warming. "So the great thing about team sports is that you have a group of guys who all have the same mission as you. They all want to do well, they are going to help you and support you to do better."
Defender Mitchel Bringolf and forward Mac Curran embodied the team's sense of togetherness as they stepped up to find the net and lead the Nittany Lions to victory.
"The team effort was amazing," said Curran. "As a team we played unbelievable. On the sideline everyone was helping out keeping the energy up so it was a great team effort tonight."
Bringolf's second half goal came during the 51st minute when he connected for a rip to the lower right of the net.
"So I went back post to get away from it and then I kind of lost my man and ran first post and then the ball kind of just fell in front of me," said Bringolf. "I don't even know how it got there I think the other team hit it there and I just open net tapped it in."
Curran's goal was the icing on Bringolf's game winning cake. During the 69th minute, the forward laid a bullet into the middle of the net from the top of the box.
"It was amazing," said Curran. "I've been working so hard and these guys pushed me every single day and just to finally get one and to get my name up there, so it just felt really good."
Although team efforts are not unfamiliar to Curran and Bringolf, their goals were season and career firsts. Bringolf's game-clincher was the first of his career dawning the Blue and White, while Curran's connection with ball and net was his first since his freshman year campaign.
"It is Mitch's first goal ever like ever," said Warming. "The guy is a team favorite and then he gets a great goal...for us; right place at the right time. "Everybody was really happy because it was an amazing event for him. It was the game winner."
Although Bringolf was relatively new to the scoring spotlight, he knew exactly who he wanted to celebrate with under the lights of Jeffrey Field: the rest of the Penn State men's soccer team.
"I was lost to be honest," said Bringolf. "I'm not used to it. I just ran around and found a group of guys and ran towards them."
While the Blue and White struggled through their early season campaign, they found belief, unity, and strength through the brothers standing on the same side of the pitch dawning the Blue and White and Penn State pride.
"Tonight was family," said Curran. "We felt like we lacked that the last couple of games...and tonight was just unbelievable. Everybody's heads were up, everyone was standing more straight up, everyone was just playing for each other like a family."
"They are all leaders in their own way and I mean that 100 percent," said Warming before Wednesday night's victory. "They all have something they contribute to the team. They are just so bright and there are so many good personalities on this team."
As they hope to capitalize on their growing bond and maintain their momentum, the Penn State Nittany Lions head on the road for a conference clash against the Wisconsin Badgers on Sept. 23 at 8 p.m. They will remain on the road through Sept. 27 as they bookend their trip against the Temple Owls for an in-state bout.
"We went out there and got it done," said Curran. "We started to play for each other like I said as a family so that's really going to keep us close and fighting for each other...for the guy right next to you."
For more information on Nittany Lion men's soccer, log onto www.GoPSUsports.com and follow the team on the various social media platforms.