SCRANTON, Pa. – A pair of second half goals for Drew proved costly as The University of Scranton men's soccer team (7-6-2, 1-3-1 Landmark) dropped a 2-0 decision to the Rangers (11-2-3, 1-2-2 Landmark) in Landmark Conference action on Wednesday night at Weiss Field in Scranton.
The Royals currently sit three points out of the fourth and final Landmark playoff spot with two regular season games remaining. Each team receives three points for a win and one point for a tie in conference play.
In the first half, junior Anthony Rizzi (Bloomfield, N.J./Bloomfield) nearly gave Scranton an early lead in the 11th minute, but his blast from just outside the top of the box was denied with a diving save by Drew goalie Calum Erlenborn. Just over a minute later, Erlenborn made another save on sophomore Ciaran Corr (Newtown Square, Pa./Marple Newtown) to keep the game scoreless for the time being. Royals' senior goalie Aidan Hartey (Elkins Park, Pa./St. Joseph's Prep) added a pair of saves of his own in the later stages of the half to send the game scoreless into the locker room.
Drew was able to take a 1-0 lead in the 56th minute when an initial shot from Gabe Di Pierro was blocked by a Scranton defender, but the rebound went right back to Di Pierro who fired home to the far post. Though the Royals searched for an equalizer over the final 30 plus minutes, they were unable to come up with one and the Rangers added a header goal following a free kick in the 76th minute for a 2-0 advantage.
The Rangers held a slight 14-11 edge in shots and the Royals were led by four shots from Corr, while Hartey registered five saves on the night.
The game was a physical affair throughout as the two teams combined for six yellow cards and 21 fouls.
Head coach Matt Pivirotto's team is back in action on Saturday at Susquehanna with action getting underway at 1 p.m.