After 20 minutes of play, the GW men’s soccer team seemed to have a good handle on its game against Costal Carolina on Friday. The players were maintaining possession on offense and the defense had allowed only one shot, but things began to get rocky for the Colonials midway through the first half.
In the 20th minute, Costal Carolina midfielder Leo Mukofsky got free near the GW end line, crossed the ball to the back post, where forward Sebastian Bahos was able to tap the ball into the back of the net for his team’s first goal.
Six minutes later, after a long Costal Carolina throw-in was cleared out of the box, Chanticleer midfielder Luis Faz crossed the ball to Ross Kelly, who headed the ball in the net to put his team up 2-0. The Chanticleers didn’t let up after halftime, scoring two more times to go up 4-0 and put the Colonials (1-5) away for good.
“I don’t think we put anything together in the final third [of the field],” head coach George Lidster said. “I thought the first 30 minutes we did well possession-wise, but in the final third they were solid in the back, and our last ball was never a good ball.”
Coastal Carolina’s offense excelled especially off of set plays, with its second goal coming off a throw in, its third off a free kick and its fourth off a corner kick. The Chanticleers took advantage of height advantages on offense as well, with the six-foot-three Kelly scoring the Chanticleers second and fourth goals over shorter GW defenders.
“I don’t know if you noticed the size of some of their forwards, they had a hell of a mismatch,” Lidster said. “I think our tallest guy is six-foot. And if it were in basketball terms, it would be like a center taking on a point guard . . . we battled in those positions but got out-muscled.”
For the GW offense, it was the second consecutive game in which it was held scoreless. The Colonials had chances, putting five shots and four shots on goal against the Chanticleers, but GW struggled to put together any consistent offensive pressure.
“Right now it seems like up front we’re disconnected,” said junior forward Yoni Berhanu. “One guy will go up and he’ll be there by himself against four people. We’re not all pushing up as a team, so people end up being isolated. It’s hard to go one on four.”
“I would say off the field it’s one of the best groups we’ve had, everyone gets along. But on the field we’re kind of disconnected by position,” Berhanu added. “Defense to midfielders and midfielders to forwards – it’s all kind of disconnected.”
The Colonials will look to get in-sync at home this Friday against the University of the District of Columbia. Kickoff is set for 3 p.m.