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Golden Eagles conquer the Bengals 

Evan Stevely plays the ball for Brockport in Wednesday’s win against Buffalo State. (Photo Credit: Liv Metz/Brockport Athletics)

Brockport, NY. -In their first conference matchup of the season the SUNY Brockport men’s soccer team defeated the Buffalo State Bengals 3-1 in a complete team effort. With the win, Brockport improves to 3-2-2, while Buffalo State falls to 4-1-2. 

In a chippy match that had a total of five yellow cards, Brockport was able to overcome potential losses due to ejection, and losses due to injury and tie a season-best on the season with three goals. 

After a stagnant start by both teams offensively, Brockport was able to score as defenseman DJ Taylor was able to convert an assist from John Fitzpatrick for his first goal of the season. This goal gave Brockport all the momentum they needed as they held onto the lead for the rest of the match. 

Brockport only managed to get five shots, but being able to score three of them was something Taylor noted was important. 

“When you get a chance to score a goal, you got to take advantage of it,” Taylor said. 

After Taylor’s goal, there wasn’t much offense by either team until the end of the half. Four of the five yellow cards were pulled in between the first two goals as tensions rose from both teams, with three of them being against Brockport players. 

Brockport’s offense wasn’t content going into halftime with a one-goal lead, so Sean Lee took it upon himself to get the first goal of his collegiate career to give Brockport a two-goal lead going into the half. 

Lee accredited assistant coach Vince Correa as motivation for scoring, Correa told Lee to “crash the ball” earlier in the match. 

“I just saw the empty goal, and I crashed the goal,” Lee said. “We have to be hungry like that, we have to want to score, take advantage of the opportunities.” 

The second half started off the same way as the first, slow and defensive. However, the story of the second half was Buffalo State’s offside calls that got a header that turned into a goal called back, as well as another offsides that was called on Buffalo State on the right corner of the goal. 

Trying to get back into the game, Joseph Desmonie of Buffalo State was able to score on an assist from David Wozniak to bring the Bengals within one. But the Bengals’ hope quickly vanished as the Golden Eagles scored just two minutes later on a goal by Evan Stevely to bring the margin back up to two. 

The final goal by Stevely seemed to completely take everything out of the Bengals as they were never able to get anything going again offensively after the goal. 

Head coach Gary LaPietra called the win an all-around team effort. LaPietra was pleased to hear the team communicate more and stressed it as something he wanted them to improve on. 

“Soccer’s a game of communication,” LaPietra said. “We haven’t really been talking as much as we have today so that was a step forward for us. You could see their confidence growing and that’s why they started communicating better in the second half.” 

LaPietra realized this is just the beginning of the season and is looking forward to seeing his team grow and see what they can accomplish. 

“We’re still getting to know each other; we’ve only been together for a month,” LaPietra said. “It’s just taking us a little while to get started.” 

Brockport will look to extend their winning streak to two as the Plattsburgh State Cardinals visit Brockport on Saturday. 

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