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Penn State Men’s Soccer Blanks Villanova 4-0 Behind Peter Mangione’s Hat Trick

Penn State men’s soccer (5-2-1) blanked the Villanova Wildcats (5-2) 4-0 behind Peter Mangione’s huge evening at Jeffrey Field Tuesday night.

The rain tested both teams early on, but as soon as it slowed down, Mangione did not hesitate to break the game open. He found the back of the net twice, and would later add on a third for the coveted hat trick — the Nittany Lions’ first since 2010.

An insurance goal from Andrew Privett and a lock-down defensive effort was more than enough for the Nittany Lions to secure the win.

How It Happened

The clouds broke open and rain started to pour down just as the match began, and it without a doubt had a huge influence in the early minutes. On both sides, players were slipping and sliding and the wet pitch clearly had an impact on the ball.

Penn State threatened heavily early on, putting pressure on Villanova’s net with numerous crosses made to no avail. The Wildcats’ defense did a fantastic job at closing, but the soaked ball was making things extra difficult for either offense to get an accurate touch.

It wasn’t until the rain slowed down that the scoring started to get going.

Penn State struck first in the 26th minute, as Pierre Reedy centered the ball to Daniel Bloyou, who tapped it off his foot and left Peter Mangione one-on-one with the goalkeeper. Mangione was sure not to waste the best opportunity either team had seen so far and cashed in off of the combo assist, putting Penn State up 1-0.

Mangione would strike again 10 minutes later, this time sliding in to finish off a gorgeous cross from Andrew Privett to double Penn State’s lead for his fourth goal of the season.

The Nittany Lions’ defense clamped down on Villanova’s offensive attack to close out the first half and went into the locker room up 2-0.

The Wildcats came out of halftime firing, and had two golden opportunities in the opening minutes but were denied by Owen Elliott, who made two fantastic saves from close range.

Both offenses were quiet for the majority of the second half until Penn State doubled its lead in a two-minute span. Privett resembled Mangione earlier on in this match, as he stood right in front of the goal and was able to tap in the cross from Reedy, earning his second assist of the game.

Mangione wasn’t done yet, however, as Villanova’s Carson Williams drew a red card in the 71st minute, allowing the Nittany Lion to step up to the line for a penalty kick.

Mangione blasted it past the reserve keeper to secure himself a distinguished hat trick.

Propelled by Mangione’s huge outing, the Nittany Lions were able to leave Jeffrey Field with soaking wet uniforms and a victory.

Player of the Match

Peter Mangione | Forward

Although the defense was marvelous, the obvious pick is Mangione. The sophomore forward was in the right place at the right time for the Nittany Lions, recipient of not one, but two fantastic assists from Reedy, also cashing in on a penalty kick opportunity in the second half to secure himself a hat trick.

It’s the first hat trick for the Nittany Lions since Corey Hertzog did it against Old Dominion in 2010. It brings his total to five goals on the season.

What’s Next?

Penn State will travel to Princeton, New Jersey to take on the Tigers on Saturday, September 25 at 4 p.m.

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About the Author

Zach Donaldson

Zach is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. He is currently an Onward State contrib. and also serves as an editor for Penn State’s CommRadio. He’s hails from Downingtown, Pa. or in other words just outside of Philly. When he's not watching or ranting about Philly sports, you can probably find him at the gym. If you like sports tweets, follow him on Twitter @zachdonaldson_ and all inquires go to [email protected]

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