Men's Soccer Battles Back to Defeat Anna Maria on the Road

Photo by: Ron Waite/Photosportacular
Photo by: Ron Waite/Photosportacular

Paxton, Mass. – The Albertus Magnus College men's soccer team erased a one-goal, first-half deficit with three unanswered markers en route to a 3-1 victory against Anna Maria on Tuesday evening in Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) action at AMCAT Field.

The Falcons (9-5-1, 4-3-1) have now won back-to-back road conference games to move into a tie for fourth-place in the GNAC standings with Johnson & Wales, while the AMCATS (2-10-1, 1-6-1) dropped their fourth straight contest by two or more goals.

The hosts opened the scoring in the 15th minute as junior midfielder Derrick Casey converted a feed from sophomore defender Dan McElhinney for his third tally of the fall. The strike beat Albertus Magnus sophomore goalkeeper Joe Russo (North Haven, Conn.) and gave the AMCATS their first lead in four games.

Albertus Magnus peppered Anna Maria senior netminder Jonathan Alicea with shots throughout the first and second halves. The Falcons finally broke through to knot the game at one in the 36th minute courtesy of a strike from senior midfielder Alex Zapata (Hamden, Conn.). The tally was Zapata's fifth of the season and his third in GNAC play.

The guests took the lead for good just 30 seconds later as junior forward Ritchy Jean Pierre (Fairfield, Conn.) potted his fourth goal of the season. Jean Pierre came in a on a breakaway with only Alicea standing in front of him and was able to net the eventual game-winner.

Late in the first half, Albertus Magnus capped the scoring as senior midfielder Matt Mueller (Cheshire, Conn.) scored for the second straight tilt. The tally was his team-leading sixth of the season and came on a nice individual effort as he intercepted the ball and fired a blast past Alicea. It marked the second time in 2016 that Mueller has had goals in back-to-back games.

The Falcon backline held their ground in the second half and the offense continued to fire shots on goal, but were unable to convert.

In net, Russo finished with five saves to earn his ninth win of the season. On the opposite end, Alicea turned aside a season-best 10 shots in a losing effort.

Albertus Magnus returns to action on Saturday, October 22, with a pivotal home conference showdown against Norwich that is slated to begin at 4:00 pm as part of the College's 20th Annual Fall Fest. The Falcons are looking to avenge a 1-0 setback on the road versus the Cadets in 2015. Prior to Saturday's contest, the team will honor the six members of the senior class for their contributions to the program.

For the latest information on the men's soccer team and Albertus Magnus athletics, follow AMCAthletics on Twitter and visit