October 2, 2018

Atlantic Spotlight, Wk 5

By D3soccer.com Contributor

Some of the Atlantic region's best are paced by attackers near the top of the national scoring leaderboard. While many individuals added to their totals through another round of conference play, first-time scorers stole the headlines in Week #5. Let's take a look:

Messiah, Lynchburg both cruise

The No. 2 Messiah Falcons (8-0-1 / 1-0-0) easily handled the Hood Blazers (6-2-1 / 0-1-0), winning 6-1 in the opening MAC Commonwealth match for each team. The Blazers came in riding a 6-game win streak and kept the defending national champions off the board for most of the first half, but eventually the flood gates opened for the Falcons. Nick West scored twice to keep himself among the national scoring leaders while four other Falcons chipped in.

In a key ODAC matchup, the No. 7 Lynchburg Hornets (7-0-1 / 3-0-0) defeated the Roanoke Maroons 4-0. The Hornets out shot their rivals 24-5, scored in the 31st, 59th, and twice in the last minute. Sophomore midfielder Ben Mackey scored two of the Hornets' goals, while junior forward Hussein Osman scored his first goal of the season and assisted two others.

Franklin & Marshall tops Dickinson, ties with Swarthmore

In Centennial Conference play, the No. 11 Franklin & Marshall Diplomats (8-0-2 / 2-0-2) started the week by topping Dickinson (6-3-1 / 3-1-0) by a score of 2-0. Later in the week they needed a late equalizer against the Swarthmore Garnet (6-3-1 / 2-1-1) to earn a 2-2 draw.

In the 12th minute against the Red Devils senior Ugo Okolie’s shot careened off the crossbar. Junior Conner Whitacre collected the rebound and put it in for his 4th of the season and an early 1-0 lead. Play was even through the first half and start of the second until the Diplomats again broke through in the 64th – junior Alex Martinez to Freshman Steven Yakita. Dickinson picked up the assault the rest of the way, but the Diplomats defense and goalkeeper Christopher Amoruso preserved the shutout.

The Garnet came into Lancaster riding a 3-match win streak and needing a result to keep pace in the CC. But the Diplomats struck first with Whitacre again finding the net. Yakita set him up in the 15th minute with a cross from the left side. The lead was short lived as six (6) minutes later Garnet junior Ethan Witkowski chipped one into the box that junior Zach Viscusi finished for his 3rd of the season.

The Garnet struck again with a mere 21 seconds left in the half for a 2-1 advantage. Sophomore Woojin Shin fed fellow soph Julian Bueno who netted his first of the year. F&M controlled much of the 2nd half play but it took to the 89th minute to equalize. There was a throw-in to the box, a couple of headers, and the goalie almost getting a hold of the ball before junior Robert Maze poked it home. Each team had chances in overtime but had to settle for the single point on the day.

Late York (Pa.) goal ties Mary Washington 1-1

In the opening Capital Athletic Conference game for each team, junior Malcolm Djiki scored the first goal of his career for the York (Pa.) Spartans (6-3-1 / 0-0-1) knotting the game at 1-1. The headed equalizer against the No. 13 Mary Washington Eagles (7-0-2 / 0-0-1) came in the 75th minute and finished the scoring for the day.

The Eagles had the better of play in the first-half, but it was senior Coner MacMurdy’s header off a corner in the 42nd minute that finally broke through. In OT both teams had chances but Spartan soph Billy Bridgehampton and Eagle sophomore Ken Kurtz made 3 saves each to secure the valuable point.

Tartans take UAA opener

The No. 13 Carnegie Mellon Tartans (7-0-2 / 1-0-0) traveled to take on the New York University Violets (7-2-0 / 0-1-0) in a University Athletic Association opener for both teams. Junior Cooper Tubiana scored the game winner – his 2nd of the season – on a strike from the top of the box in the 59th minute.

Senior Alec Lam was between the pipes for the Tartans, made 2 saves, and ran his record to (3-0-1).

Salisbury over Catholic, then starts CAC campaign with shutout

The Salisbury Sea Gulls (8-1-1 / 1-0-0) continued their winning ways this week with a tidy 3-1 win while visiting the Catholic Cardinals (4-4-0) and a home 1-0 CAC opening win over Frostburg State Bobcats (3-7-1 / 0-1-0).

The Catholic game played as even through the first half and the start of the second. But as the Sea Gulls started applying more pressure in the 60th minute sophomore Conner Banks cleaned up a loose ball in front for his 1st career goal. Four minutes later freshman Cullen Myers scored his 1st career goal – from Freshman Ryan Knaggs – to extend the lead. The Cardinals cut the deficit back to one with a foul-in-the-box penalty kick in the 75th. A minute later Knaggs got into the swing of things with his 1st career goal on a free kick just outside the box. Seems there’s young talent in Salisbury.

On Saturday the Sea Gulls scored early on the Bobcats as junior Matt Hawkins made a long run down the left side and put a pass in the middle to the feet of junior Ryan Spadin. He buried it for his 2nd of the year. The tally held up as Trevor Brookhart made 3 saves in posting the shutout.

Christopher Newport hands Penn State Harrisburg first defeat in CAC opener

Christopher Newport (4-4-0 / 1-0-0) has played a tough schedule so far this season. But starting with three straight wins, then losing four in a row by a single goal, has resulted in a team that is probably much better than their record would suggest. So, with undefeated Penn State-Harrisburg (11-1-0 / 0-1-0) coming to town it offered the Captains an opportunity to confirm that thinking and get the ship headed in the right direction.

This may have been their toughest match yet. While the Captains controlled the game for most of the day the scoreboard stayed nil-nil through each half and the first overtime period. It wasn’t until the 103rd minute that junior Michael Wilson juked a defender in the left corner before delivering a gorgeous cross in front that fellow junior Kharli Jones headed in for his 1st career goal and the hard-earned win.

Ramapo does everything against Rutgers–Newark except win, then takes out Stockton

The Ramapo Roadrunners (9-1-0 / 3-1-0) came into their home match on Wednesday with fellow NJAC member Rutgers-Newark (7-4-1 / 2-2-0) undefeated and sitting at No. 22 in the D3 Soccer National Poll. And, while in many ways dominating the Scarlet Raiders throughout they somehow came out on the short side of a 2-0 loss. On Saturday they rebounded and defeated the Stockton Ospreys (5-5-1 / 2-2-1) by the same 2-0 score.

It’s not surprising from the way Ramapo has played, scored, and defended this year that they out shot the Scarlet Raiders 32-7 and put 14 shots on goal to the Raiders 3. What is surprising is they never found the net and that their opponents did so twice. Rookie goaltender Christen Andrach had a monster performance with 14 saves to secure the win and his 6th shutout of the year.

Against Stockton the first half went scoreless with the Roadrunners holding an 11-6 shot advantage. Joe Fala has been highlighted here as being among the national goal scoring leaders. But on this day Joe included others as his assists, first to junior Nick Petrozziello, and then to senior Chris Nash, led the way.

Four games in Montclair State leading NJAC

Montclair State (8-1-1 / 4-0-0) took care of business this week downing both William Paterson (6-3-1 / 2-2-0) and Rutgers-Newark (7-4-1 / 2-2-0). Junior Nixon Soglo lead the way with 4 goals on the week.

On Wednesday, the Red Hawks fell behind to the Pioneers early, stayed behind for a long time, but scored 3 times in the last 20 minutes to secure the 3-1 win. The Pioneers scored in the 9th minute off a deflected free kick that was cleaned up by junior Cameron Allen. MSU had the better of play over the next 60 minutes but the WPU defense did not break. Until Soglo connected twice within 6 minutes to stun the Pioneers.

The Red Hawks extended their NJAC record to 4-0-0 with a going away, 7-2 win against the Scarlet Raiders. Soglo again scored 2, Rafael Terci had a goal and an assist, and Michael Knapp added 2 assists as the Red Hawks never trailed and we’re hardly challenged.

Montclair State hosts Ramapo this Saturday in a key NJAC matchup.


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Atlantic Spotlight


The weekly Atlantic Spotlight will survey the top Division III men's conferences and teams in the combined NCAA Mid-Atlantic and South Atlantic Regions consisting of fifteen states.  The primary ones are Pennsylvania (45), Virginia (18), New Jersey (14), Maryland (10, North Carolina (9), Georgia (8), and New York (7). The remaining states are home to three or fewer schools with conference ties elsewhere: Alabama, Arkansas, D.C., Delaware, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Tennessee.


With so much territory to cover in a single column, we will focus primarily on the tradionally stronger conferences such as the CAC, Centennial, Landmark, Commonwealth, and the NJAC.  Expect to see contests involving teams in our Top 25 typically against perceived stronger opponents along with teams on the rise.


We will look at some of the key match-ups, results, and standout performances, identifying who is trending up and who is trending down each week.

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