September 10, 2013

Three different players score as No. 18 Judges defeat 10-man WPI, 3-0

Three different Brandeis players scored, and the Judges benefit from a 23rd-minute red card from a WPI defender to defeat the visiting Engineers, 3-0. The Judges, ranked third in New England and 18th nationally by the NSCAA, stay perfect on the season, moving to 5-0. The Engineers suffered their first loss of the season, falling to 2-1-1.

The two sides were locked in a close battle until the 23rd minute. Senior midfielder Kyle Feather (Pinebrook, N.J./Montville Township) took a corner from the left side of the pitch that was deflected towards the WPI net. A WPI handball kept the ball from crossing the goal line, and after consulting with one of the assistant refs, the referee awarded Brandeis a penalty kick and issued a red card to junior defender Connor Bolton (Warwick, R.I./Bishop Hendricken) for "denying a clear goal-scoring opportunity."

Amid the commotion following the sending off, as well as appeals by WPI that the referee had dismissed the wrong man, Brandeis senior forward Sam Ocel (No. Attleboro, Mass./No. Attleboro) stepped up and blasted the penalty off the inside of the left post for his second goal of the season. It was the co-captain's first game-winner this season, after earning UAA MVP honors by tallying nine game-winners last year.

The Judges would double their lead just minutes later. Feather swung in a 28th minute corner, meeting the head of sophomore midfielder Jake Picard (Suffield, Conn./Suffield) at the near post. Picard's effort on goal was parried away by WPI senior keeper Jeff Wong (Millington, N.J./Watchung Hills), but sophomore defender Conor Lanahan (Avon, Conn./Avon) used his 6 foot, 3 inch frame to one-time a header into the far corner of the net.

With a two-goal lead and an extra man on the field, the Judges dominated possession for much of the rest of the match. Junior forward Tyler Savonen (Orleans, Mass./Nauset Regional) headed over from inside the 6-yard box in the 63rd minute, and Wong needed to come off his line and make a sliding block to deny rookie forward Mike Lynch (Weymouth, Mass./Weymouth) of his first collegiate goal.

The Judges finally found their insurance goal in the 86th minute. Great interplay down the left flank between senior left back Ben Applefield (Avon, Conn./Avon) and Savonen opened Savonen up on the left side of the box. The junior calmly played the ball across the face of the net, where senior forward Matt Peabody (Brunswick, Maine/Brunswick) was waiting to tap it in for his first goal of the season.

Wong led the way for the Engineers, making 10 saves in the loss. Senior forward Chris Ciampa (Danvers, Mass./Danvers) took four of his team's six shots, forcing Brandeis junior keeper Joe Graffy (Concord, N.H./Concord) to make two of his three stops on the day. Graffy held WPI scoreless for his second shutout of the season.

The Judges travel to Clark University over the weekend, taking on the Cougars at 1 p.m. on Saturday. The Engineers host Elms College on Thursday at 7 p.m.