Men's soccer starts strong, hangs on at Wheaton College

Zach Viera '17
Zach Viera '17

NORTON, Mass. (information taken from the Wheaton press release) – The men's soccer team scored two goals late in the first half and withstood a Wheaton College rally late in the second half to bring home a 2-1 win in non-conference action at Keefe Field on Tuesday evening. The Judges, ranked 14th in the country by the NSCAA, improve to 9-1 on the season, while the Lyons fall to 8-3.

Two reserve players were the standouts for the Judges on the night. Rookie forward Zach Vieira (Andover, Mass./Brooks School) and sophomore forward Michael Chaput (Holliston, Mass./Holliston) supplied all of the offense for Brandeis, as each registered a goal and an assist.

Vieira gave the Judges a 1-0 lead at the 39:04 mark. Senior forward Tudor Livadaru (Bronx, N.Y. / Riverdale-Kingsbridge Acad.) passed up a shot on the left flank and instead found Chaput. The sophomore played Vieira behind the defense, and the rookie snuck a shot just over the goal line past Wheaton sophomore goalkeeper Matt Dickey (Newton, Mass./Northfield Mount Hermon School). It was the second goal in as many games for Vieira.

Chaput buried his second of the season and his first career game-winner at 42:39. vieira's initial shot from the left side of the box was turned away by Dickey, but Chaput was perfectly positioned at the right post to bury the rebound. Brandeis outshot Wheaton 10-7 overall in the first half. 

The Lyons came out strong after the break, outshooting the Judges 11-5 in the second half. Wheaton junior forward Travis Blair (Hastings, N.Y./Hastings) netted his team-leading ninth goal of the season on a penalty kick in 78th minute to cut Brandeis lead in half, but Wheaton couldn't get another shot on frame.

Brandeis junior goalkeeper Joe Graffy (Concord, N.H./Concord) made one save in the win to improve his record to 7-1 on the season. Dickey collected three stops on the other end of the pitch.

Wheaton outshot Brandeis, 18-15, though the Judges had five shots on target to the Lyons' two. Both squads were even in corner kicks at six apiece. 

The Lyons hold a 14-11-2 advantage in the all-time series, but Brandeis has now won the past three head-to-head meetings.

Brandeis begins conference play this weekend, as the Judges take on Case Western Reserve University at 11 a.m. on Saturday. Wheaton travels to Babson College for a NEWMAC matchup on Saturday at 1 p.m.