The West Chester men’s soccer team endured another tough two weeks, winning just one game and losing three, dropping their record to 3-8-2 on the season (1-4-2 in the PSAC East). On Oct. 6, The Golden Rams traveled to Shippensburg to face the Red Raiders and snapped their 3-game losing streak, beating the Red Raiders 3-1.
In their last meeting, the Golden Rams battled Ship to a 1-1 draw in 2OTs. In this meeting the Red Raiders were still searching for their first win of the season while West Chester’s offense was really beginning to find itself.
Ricky Williamson began the scoring for the Golden Rams in the 15th minute of the first half, heading a ball past Ship goalkeeper Clay Sale off an assist from defender J.J. DiFerdinando to make the game 1-0.
In the 36th minute, the West Chester offense struck again. This time, mid-fielder Neil Gallagher took a pass from mid-fielder Ryan Dicce to make the game 2-0.
The Red Raiders managed to cut the lead in half in the 45th minute when Dee Barlee beat junior goalkeeper Peter Weiss for his first goal of the season.
In the second half, the Red Raiders outshot the Golden Rams 9-6 as they tried to come back to win or tie; however, West Chester made the Red Raider task harder. In the 51st minute, Ricky Williamson netted his second goal of the game and fifth of the season when he took a feed from senior defender Chris Ponto and put it past Sale for the third West Chester goal of the game.
The talented West Chester defense stood strong in the second half, bearing down on the Red Raider attack. The Red Raiders got off four shots in the final 10 minutes of play but freshman goalkeeper Garrett Bleiler, in relief of Peter Weiss who recorded the win, posted four saves in his appearance, all in the final 10 minutes of the game to preserve the West Chester win.
Two days later, the Golden Rams traveled to Wilmington, Delaware to face powerhouse Wilmington University, a team that had dominated the PSAC in non-league games, defeating both Millersville and ESU. Wilmington continued its dominance over the PSAC, beating the Golden Rams 3-0.
Garrett Bleiler took his first loss of the season and college career after allowing two goals. Peter Weiss allowed one goal in relief of Blieler.
Wilmington began the scoring in the 6th minute when Chris Sims scored. In the 49th minute, Sargbah Tarpeh scored the second goal of the game, and in the 79th minute, Nicklaus McDonald padded the lead, scoring the third goal of the season.
The Golden Rams nearly equaled Wilmington in shots but Wilmington goalkeeper Ethan Kavanagh turned away all six shots he faced. Wilmington had the advantage in corner kicks as well.
Two days later, on a Saturday afternoon, the Golden Rams lost a heartbreaker in OT to Slippery Rock, in a PSAC crossover match.
Forward Bryan Nugent scored the game’s first goal in the 27th minute from a feed by Ricky Williamson. He beat Slippery Rock’s keeper to the upper-right side of the net.
The Golden Rams held the 1-0 advantage through the first half and most of the second. In the 85th minute, Slippery Rock took a corner. Jeremy Deighton headed the ball into the net and tied the game at 1-1, sending the game to OT.
In overtime, Patrick Conley headed the game winner past Peter Weiss, who earned the loss in this game after relieving Garrett Bleiler who made five saves and didn’t allow a goal in his 60 minutes of game action.
Last Friday, on a rainy and cold night, the Golden Rams battled first-place Millersville (13-1, 7-0) in a PSAC East battle, losing another close game 2-1.
In the 6th minute, Aaron Roland scored his fifth goal of the season for Millersville when he headed a ball past keeper Garret Bleiler.
In the 22nd minute, mid-fielder Pat Baffuto doubled the Millersville lead, scoring his fourth goal of the season off an assist by Steve Melnick
The Golden Rams cut the lead in half in the 35th minute thanks to a successful Zach Weaver penalty kick, his fifth goal of the season.
Millersville dominated the first half though, tallying 10 shots in the first half.
In the second half, the Millersville defense held the Golden Rams scoreless. Josh Labik nearly evened up the score in the 70th minute but his shot hit the post. A minute later, Millersville keeper Matt Langione saved a Ryan Dicce shot. In the 77th minute, a Josh Labik shot was blocked.
Millersville held on for the 2-1 win and its perfect PSAC East record.
The Golden Rams will travel to Central Islip, New York for a non-league match on Friday afternoon. They return home to play Philadelphia University on Oct. 28 and close out the season at East Stroudsburg.
Chris Monigle is a fifth-year student majoring in Literature. He can be reached at CM660983@wcupa.edu.