Men’s soccer dropped their A-10 opener against Duquesne Saturday.
The Colonials (2-4-1, 0-1 A-10) fell to the Dukes (5-3, 1-0 A-10) in a 3–1 shootout on the road. Despite a hotly contested first half, the Colonials were ultimately unable to keep pace with Duquesne’s offense.
“We worked hard defensively, we, unfortunately, took a couple of plays off,” head coach Craig Jones said. “Whether we got caught ball-watching on some of those goals, or lack of communication, which hurt us. So that was the main thing really, collectively as a group is lack of communication.”
GW started off strong, netting a goal in the 15th minute courtesy of sophomore midfielder Demi Amigun. Junior midfielder Tom Cooklin sent a ball into the box that was cleared by a Duquesne defender right to Amigun, who delivered a one-time strike from the right side to notch his first career goal in just his second consecutive start.
“The first 15 to 20 minutes of the game where we got the goal showed how dangerous we can be in the attacking third,” Brummet said. “We pressed well and were organized, which will give us confidence. We brought good energy into the game, and even after going down, we still kept pushing to get back in the game.”
However, Duquesne scored an equalizing goal in the 33rd minute after senior midfielder Ryan Landry’s shot rang off the crossbar, allowing junior midfielder Logan Muck to finish the rebound and draw the scores level.
“Duquesne worked hard after conceding the first goal, and what they did well was that they were deadly on the counter-attack,” Brummet said.
The Colonials fell behind just four minutes into the second half when Dukes freshman midfielder Ryan Goodhew cracked a shot from the top of the 18-yard box just under the crossbar to break the tie. Landry proved to be the bane of the Colonials yet again in the 71st minute, when he crossed the ball into the path of freshman forward Zach Mowka, who widened the deficit to 3–1.
“We’ll continue to learn and grow as a team,” graduate student midfielder Matthew Brummet said. “This loss will help us prepare ourselves better and work in areas that need improvement going into the rest of our A-10 schedule. It’s a good learning experience for how we need to play on the road and will help show our resilience as a group.”
Duquesne outshot the Colonials 12-9 on the day, striking 58.3 percent of their shots on frame. Despite junior goalkeeper Justin Grady matching a season-high four saves, it was not enough to stifle the Dukes’ counter attacks. Both teams combined for 12 yellow cards in a physical match.
GW earned a season-high eight corner kicks during the match and Amigun recorded three shots in total, but the Colonials were ultimately unable to penetrate the Duquesne’s defense.
Jones said the team has to do a better job of defending their leads when they get up early on the road. He said he wants the team to replicate the “energy” and sharpness of the first half so they can keep up the offensive pressure against future opponents.
“I think we were a little bit too predictable, we started so well, we didn’t want to change how that went so we kept trying that,” Jones said. “We didn’t ask them any questions in terms of causing many problems that they hadn’t seen in that first 25 to 30 minutes. So I think we have to have a little more variation in our attacking point.”
The Colonials continue their four-game road swing against the reigning A-10 tournaments champions Fordham this Saturday. Kick off is set for 3 p.m.
This article appeared in the September 23, 2021 issue of the Hatchet.