Men's Soccer Tops Penn to End Skid
Oct. 5, 2011
By Jeff Sattora, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
Tuesday night, the Lions finally flipped the switch as an early goal five minutes into the game by Jacob Barron help set the tone in what turned into a 2-0 win over Penn home at Jeffrey Field.
John Gallagher, who had both assists on the night, found Barron just outside the 18-yard box where Barron sent in a bouncing shot just to the right of the diving goaltender.
"It was definitely crucial (to score early)," Gallagher said. "We saw this as a must win game so we came out here and Jacob was able to have a beautiful strike."
"It always helped getting that early goal, settling you down," Gallagher added. "Helps get the team you scored on a little panicky."
That goal was first time the Lions have had a lead in a game since defeating St. Francis Sept. 14.
With that one goal lead, Penn State defense was able to help lock the game down, even facing a quick and tough Penn offense.
"Our defense kept them (Penn) at bay, they never had a real quality chance," said Julian Cardona. "It would always be tough for them to score and Andrew (Wolverton) had a couple real nice saves, big time."
As the defense continued to play strong the offense looked to put even more pressure on the Quakers, and that's exactly what Penn State was able to do early in the second half in the 51st minute of action.
Gallagher took the ball down the left side before crossing it in front of the goal, where a diving Cardona was waiting to finish it with his head on the other end.
That goal gave the Lions their first multi-goal game since Sept. 9 vs. St. Peter's.
"Our guys were very focused, very motivated," Warming said about the game's importance. "I think it was the most focused I've seen them before the game."
Coach Warming seemed very happy after the win, what players had called a "must win" game.
"The two goals were exactly what we worked on yesterday in training," Warning said. Adding they talked about both driving the ball on the ground or popping it in the air, as well as crossing and finishing, both of which helped lead to goals.
To go along with a strong offensive performance the Lions also saw a strong game from freshman goalkeeper Andrew Wolverton, who recorded his eighth shutout of the season against the Quakers with five saves.
"He felt bad after the Michigan game and he came out and did a little extra work with Bo (Oshoniyi, goalkeepers coach)," Warming said. "Andrew really learns quickly and corrected a couple of those mistakes, he cut out a lot of through balls tonight and that was very important."
With the win, the Lions are looking forward to keeping that momentum going as they travel on the road to face Michigan State in Big Ten play.
"It's going to be a big game, going to be a battle," Cardona said. "Michigan State is always good."
"The mentality for our guys now is let's go on the road and steal a couple on the road and then we'll come back and defend our home turf," Warming added.