Bears snap Emory’s win streak
Men to face 6 UAA foes in their last 9 games
The men’s soccer team delivered the Emory Eagles their first loss in seven games with a 2-0 shutout on Sunday.
The game was the first University Athletic Association contest of the year for the Bears, who face conference opponents in six of their nine remaining games.
“Our non-conference games prepared us well, but there was definitely a feeling of importance surrounding the game,” junior midfielder Cody Costakis said. “Everyone was a little bit more serious.”
Wash. U. picked up its first win against Emory in the past six meetings.
“[UAA play is] always a lot more competitive and a lot more physical, the games matter more because they count for our regional record as well as our conference record,” senior co-captain John Hengel said. “If you don’t win in your conference, your [NCAA tournament] entry is determined based on how you play against teams in your region.”
The first half against the Eagles presented a challenge for the Red and Green. Emory initially put together an effective attack, besting the Bears 7-4 on shots.
“We survived the first half—they put a lot of pressure on us,” Costakis said. “There were a few dangerous situations, and whoever had to come through, whether it was a defender, goalkeeper, midfielder or forward…we managed to get the job done.”
Junior forward Harry Beddo scored the game’s first goal in the 13th minute on a play initiated by a corner kick from Costakis.
“Our center forwards did a really good job of holding the ball up top,” Hengel said. “We’d been struggling with that lately…Harry Beddo and Pat McLean did a good job of that.”
By the second half, the Bears had adjusted to Emory’s offensive formations. Second-half offensive stats were more even: a 7-6 advantage for Wash. U. in shots and a 1-1 tie for corner kicks.
“In the first half, we didn’t cope very well with their formation, specifically in the center. They tended to have a man that we were not able to mark, but second half we figured that out,” Costakis said. “We didn’t really change [our formation] much, but we just figured out which player was supposed to be in what spot on the field.”
Hengel sealed the victory in the 81st minute with an insurance goal. He now leads the team in scoring with three goals for the year.
“John Duncan was dribbling down the left line, and he scooped the ball over my defender’s head perfectly to my feet,” Hengel said.
Only five of the Eagles’ 13 shots for the game were on goal. Senior goalkeeper John Smelcer, who has allowed only seven goals in 10 games, made five saves and earned his seventh shutout.
The Bears will continue play on Sunday, when they face Carnegie Mellon University at Francis Field at 11 a.m.