POTSDAM -- SUNY Potsdam men’s soccer coach Adam Parker made it a point to his team that they would have to find ways to get off to quicker starts in order to have a more successful season.
First test passed.
In hosting the Collegiate Village Men’s Cup, the Bears’ season debut began with a bang Friday afternoon as Potsdam notched two goals in the opening 17 minutes en route to a 3-1 victory against Lyndon State (Vermont).
It was a milestone day for Potsdam.
Sophomore midfielder Kyle Cronin (Henrietta, N.Y. / Rush-Henrietta) picked up both his first career point and first career goal during the opening half.
Junior transfer Brian Emery (Brewster, N.Y. / Brewster) also recorded his first career goal with the Bears when he scored in the 38th minute on a helper from Alex Minsker (Brewster, N.Y. / Brewster).
In the 17th minute, Cronin utilized some quick footwork to create an opening after a lead in pass from sophomore Tom Benedetto (Queensbury, N.Y. / Queensbury) to put Potsdam up 2-0.
Senior co-captain Alessio Vitale (Liverpool, N.Y. /Liverpool) struck in the ninth minute on a straightaway shot from about eight yards out on a feed from Cronin.
“I had a man marking me and somehow he just disappeared,” Cronin said. “I was left alone in the box. The ball was coming and I just flicked it in the back post. It was a nice goal. [On the assist], I saw Alessio [Vitale] making a run dialog toward the box. He did a little give and go and it was nice finish. Hopefully, tomorrow I can build on this.”
Potsdam (1-0) will open the second day of the tournament Saturday at 11 a.m. against Rutgers-Newark (0-1). It will be followed by Plattsburgh State (1-0) against Lyndon State (0-1). Approximate start time will be 1:30 p.m.
Potsdam controlled the first half with an 18-6 shots advantage and a 9-2 advantage on corner kicks.
“I think we came out ready to go,” coach Parker said. “We scored some good goals and they were from guys that we wanted to see create more chances. With Kyle getting his first career goal and assist and Brian was really dangerous so that was good to see. In the first half, he [Emery] had four or five shots on set plays.”
The Hornets got on the scoreboard in the second half when Eric Nelson (Guildhall, VT. /White Mountains) found sophomore midfielder Colin Brady (Springfield, Vt / Springfield) for a goal.
In the opening match of the Collegiate Village Men’s Soccer Cup, freshman forward Alexis Archilla (Warwick, N.Y. /Warwick Valley) beat his defender one-on-one and then kicked it past Matt Broomall (Somers Point, N.J. /Mainland Regional) in the 105th minute as Plattsburgh State rallied past Rutgers-Newark 2-1 in double overtime in the early Friday afternoon game at Maxcy Turf Field.
Archilla received a booming assist from defender C.J. Pourakis (Stormville, N.Y. /John Jay) whose kick stretched the field from yellow line to yellow line.
Archilla also made an impact earlier in the match when he found fellow freshman Nick Economou (Vestal, N.Y. / Vestal) for the equalizer in the 48th minute.
Off to the quick start, Rutgers-Newark scored in the fourth minute when freshman midfielder Anthony DeRisi (Allentown, N.J. /Allentown) scored off an assist by junior forward Raphael Araujo (North Plainfield, N.J. /North Plainfield).
The Scarlet Raiders retained the 1-0 lead through halftime on the strength of a diving save by sophomore goal keeper Matt Broomall.
Cardinals’ midfielder Matt Hamilton (Keeseville, N.Y. /Ausable Valley) was awarded a straightaway penalty kick about eight yards from the net. His attempt to find the corner of the net was robbed by Broomall, who ranged to his right and stuck out his right hand to make an outstretched save.