WASHINGTON - The No. 18 Georgetown University men's soccer squad (12-3-2, 6-2-1 BIG EAST) defeated the Creighton University Bluejays (9-6-2, 3-4-2 BIG EAST) on Wednesday afternoon at Shaw Field in the team's regular season finale. With the victory, the Hoyas moved to 12-3-2 overall and finished BIG EAST Conference play with a mark of 6-2-1. The win coupled with other results gave the Hoyas the No. 2 seed in the BIG EAST Championship.
"The guys weren't handling their jobs in the first 30 minutes of the game, but at the end of the day I was really proud of the response," said Georgetown Head Coach Brian Wiese. "The second half was a really good response to a poor first-half performance."
Creighton controlled the pace for the first 15 minutes of the game as the Hoyas were on their heels and the Bluejays had a number of good looks. Georgetown goalkeeper JT Marcinkowski (Alamo, Calif./De La Salle) was forced to make a pair of early saves as Creighton was buzzing.
The Hoyas regrouped following a helicopter delay and began to gain possession as freshman forward Derek Dodson (Aurora, Ill./Waubonsie Valley) and sophomore defender Dylan Nealis (Massapequa, N.Y./Massapequa) both had solid chances.
In the 27th minute, the Bluejays got on the board as a cross from the endline was sent across the box and Ricky Lopez-Espin got a head on it knocking it to the far corner to make it 1-0.
Creighton came roaring back forcing Marcinkowki to come off of his line to stop a 1v1 as the Bluejays searched for a second. Before Creighton could double the score, Georgetown managed a goal of its own to tie the game in the 30th minute.
The play started with senior forward Declan McCabe (Weston, Mass./The Rivers School) who danced around his defender near the endline and shot towards the far post. Bluejay keeper Michael Kluver came out to get a hand on it, but the rebound went to freshman freshman forward Jack Beer (Thornwood, N.Y./Byram Hills) who was deep in the box unmarked as Beer sent it right back in to knot the contest at one. It was Beer's first-career goal.
The Hoyas pushed for one more late, but the squads went into the break in a 1-1 tie.
In just the second minute of the second half, senior forward Zach Knudson (Oakland, N.J./DePaul Catholic/NC State) passed it to McCabe who had a sure goal bounce out off of the inside of the crossbar. The Hoyas looked like a different team in the second half as the squad controlled the pace of the game and put pressure on the Bluejay defense.
The game winner came off of another rebound, but started with senior captain Christopher Lema (Ridgefield, N.J./Ridgefield Memorial). The midfielder fired from distance as he had all afternoon and Kluver stopped the shot. The long rebound went to a charging Dodson who sent it right back in to give the Hoyas the 2-1 lead.
The insurance goal came in the 83rd minute on impressive plays from all parties. Junior midfielder Ethan Lochner took it himself through the Bluejay defense and found junior Edson Martinez (Salem, Ore./North Salem) perfectly holding his run. Martinez took it himself, but instead of shooting as Kluver came out, he passed to Dodson on his left. Dodson fired into the open net to make it a 3-1 game.
Georgetown would hold on for the remainder of the game to secure the 3-1 victory.
The Hoyas outshot the Bluejays, 19-11, and both teams managed four corner kicks on the afternoon. Marcinkowski was awarded the victory with four saves in the contest, Kluver took the loss with five saves for the game.
With the win and other results, GU clinched the second seed in the BIG EAST Championship. As the No. 2 seed, Georgetown will have a first-round bye and host a semifinal game on Wednesday, Nov. 8 at Shaw Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. and the game will be broadcast live on the BIG EAST Digital Network (BEDN). Live stats will be available at www.GUHoyas.com.
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