NEWTON, Mass. -- Behind a pair of second-half goals, the Brandeis University men's soccer team defeated host Lasell, 2-0, this afternoon. With the win, the Judges improve to 9-4-1 on the season and clinch their best season since 2006. Lasell falls to 8-6-2 with the loss.
Brandeis outshot the Lasers, 10-3, in the first half, but needed a pair of saves by Taylor Bracken (No. Andover, Mass./St. Johns Prep) in the early going. Lasell's Matt Bruninghaus also had two stops to keep the game even in the first 45 minutes. The Judges also earned five corner kicks to Lasell's one in the first half.
The Lasers again got off to a quick start in the second half, taking three shots in the first 3:13, but Bracken had two more stops. Brandeis responded, however, as sophomore midfielder Lee Russo (Westford, Mass./Westford Acad.) had a couple of shots and took a corner kick. Russo finally broke through in the 53rd minute, when he connected with classmate Joe Eisenbies (Hingham, Mass./Hingham) on a free kick. Eisenbies tallied his sixth goal of the season, which proved to be his team-leading fourth game-winner. He ranks third on the squad overall. Russo's assist was his third of the campaign, second-most on the team.
The Judges maintained their offensive pressure, going on to outshoot Lasell, 15-6, in the second half while earning seven corners while holding the Lasers out of that category. Brandeis eventually got an insurance goal in the 88th minute, when junior Alexander Farr (Nahant, Mass./St. Johns Prep) tallied his seventh of the season. Rookie Kyle Feather (Pinebrook, N.J./Montville Township) added the assist on a pretty give-and-go play, the first helper of his collegiate career.
Bracken finished with five saves for the Judges, earning his fourth shutout of the season and the team's seventh. Bruninghaus made seven stops for Lasell in the losing effort. The physical game saw 30 fouls and five yellow cards handed out to the two sides.
The Judges return to action on Friday evening when they take on Washington University in St. Louis for an 8:30 (EST) kick-off. Lasell will host a Great Northeast Athletic Conference tournament quarterfinal on Saturday at noon. The Lasers are the GNAC's top seed.