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Penn State Men’s Soccer Falls Short 2-1 To Princeton After Second-Half Goal

Penn State men’s soccer (2-2-1) lost to Princeton (1-1-1) Friday night in its first of a three-game home series.

A late goal in the first half gave Princeton the lead, but Alex Stevenson brought the equalizer off of a corner kick from Tyger Evans. The Tigers scored a second in the second half that the Nittany Lions could not come back from.

How It Happened

In the opening of the match, just four minutes in, Princeton’s Lucas Gen was fouled outside the box. This gave Penn State an opportunity to create some trouble for the Tigers’ defense. Although nothing came out of the free kick awarded to the Nittany Lions, it created some depth in their offensive line and established the way Penn State was going to play.

Penn State took the first shot of the night when Peter Mangione sent the ball to Seth Kuhn. Although Kuhn was wide open, he was far out but took the shot anyways, and the ball sailed just over the crossbar.

Right at minute 20, Penn State’s Andrew Privett took two corner kicks in a row. Tyger Evans was able to head the ball off of the second corner kick and nearly made the goal. Princeton’s keeper, William Watson, just barely saved it and kept the score square at zero.

Princeton quickly took possession and moved into Nittany Lion territory. In minute 21, Malik Pinto took a shot from across the box, sailing to the right of the goal and bouncing off the post. Kris Shakes was ready, though, as he dove from center-goal to the post to try and block the shot.

The Nittany Lions held up to Princeton’s aggression well and kept attacking its goal. In the 28th minute, Privett had a great shot from the side of the 18 aimed at the far post, but no Nittany Lion was there to tap the ball into the back of the net.

Jalen Watson was awarded a yellow card just outside of the 18 in the 42nd minute, giving Princeton a free kick. Mateo Godoy made the shot for the Tigers and snuck it past Shakes giving Princeton a 1-0 lead just before the end of the match.

Princeton took one more shot with just over a minute left in the half, but this time Shakes made the save. Penn State took back possession and ran the ball to their offensive half.

The Nittany Lions were awarded a corner kick with 25 seconds left in the half. Evans took the corner and placed it right in the middle of the box for Alex Stevenson to even out the score. With 15 seconds remaining, Penn State tied up the match 1-1.

Penn State opened the second half strong, but seemingly more calm after its last-second equalizer. Both Princeton and the Nittany Lions got a few shots in during the first ten minutes of the half, but none found the goal.

Princeton’s Jack Jasinski took a header shot in the 56th minute but Shakes was there an amazing save yet again. Even without his defensive line close by, Shakes dove and punched the ball away, denying the Tigers a tiebreaker goal.

Shakes was being tested in goal all night and eventually, in minute 69, Princeton’s pressure broke through the back line. Jasinski sent a ball toward Shakes, who tapped it but couldn’t catch it or punch it far enough away. Ryan Clare was there to tap the ball past Shakes and brought the Tigers up 2-1.

In the 82nd minute, Shakes took a goal kick and slipped, but a Princeton forward was too close for him to not take another touch. Unfortunately, Shakes was outside of the box on that second touch and Princeton was awarded a free kick.

Pinto took the kick, which was indirect, and gave the ball to Jasinski who then took the shot. Penn State’s defense was there to deflect the shot, and on Jasinski’s second try, Shakes was able to hold onto the ball.

Penn State nearly scored another to tie up the game in the 89th, but Seth Kuhn was called offsides right as the ball was landing in the goal.

The Nittany Lions were not able to score another in the last minute to tie up the game. Princeton took the win with a score of 2-1.

Player Of The Match

Alex Stevenson | Defender

Stevenson played a beautiful first half, holding down the back line and finishing Tyger Evan’s corner to even up the score with just seconds to left on the clock

What’s Next?

The Nittany Lions will stay in Happy Valley for a match against Lehigh on Monday, September 12. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

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About the Author

Mackenna Yount

Mackenna is a junior food science major from Manitou Springs, Colorado and is one of Onward State's associate editors. She loves food, is addicted to coffee, and can give you random facts or bad jokes that you didn't ask for. Ask her to bake gluten-free goodies so she has an excuse to try out new cupcake flavors. Mackenna can be contacted via Twitter @mackennayount (especially if you want to show off your best dad jokes) or you can shoot her an email at [email protected]

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