Men’s soccer defeats Bethany, 3–1, away

The Carnegie Mellon men’s soccer team split the week’s results, racking up yet another victory in regional play against Bethany College, 3–1, and dropping a difficult decision in the team’s first University Athletic Association (UAA) conference game against Washington University in St. Louis, 1–0.

The Tartans began the week by taking on Bethany College and returned home with a 3–1 victory over the Bison. Carnegie Mellon keeper senior Matt Bazin made his first save of the game early on when a Bethany forward almost scored off of a header in the box. Minutes later, junior forward Ricky Griffin countered with attacking pressure and put the Tartans on the scoreboard at the 11-minute mark. Griffin found his way around Bison defenders and struck the ball into the bottom-left corner of the net.
Griffin scored again in the 28th minute off an assist from junior midfielder Jon Simon for what would be his 11th goal of the season. After their second trip to Hoag Field this year, Griffin has a combined six goals: the two from this week’s game in addition to four goals scored against Franciscan College earlier this season. The Tartans let up their first goal in six games when a Bethany player was able to get a cross into the box that was finished by a teammate.

With their lead cut in half, the Tartans fought hard in the second half and were rewarded with a penalty kick in the 79th minute. Junior midfielder Ryan Browne took the shot and scored his fifth goal of the season, giving the Tartans a 3–1 lead. The team experienced a nervous moment late in the second half when Bethany was awarded a penalty kick off a handball in the box. The shot hit the left post and Bazin was able to hit the rebound out of bounds.

On Sunday afternoon, Washington handed the Tartans their first loss of the season as they dropped a 1–0 decision at home. Despite playing evenly throughout the game, the Bears scored within the first two minutes of play and hung onto their one- goal lead for the remainder of the match. The lone goal came off a long throw into the Tartans' defensive end. The ball was boggled around the box and skidded out to the edge of the 18-yard box, where a Washington player was able to finish it.

“We gave up a goal in the first couple minutes and that haunted us all game,” said junior co-captain Jon Hall. “I think in the first five to 10 minutes we came out and gave them too much respect and were jumpy off the get-go, which led to our momentary lapse.”

Despite the early goal, the Tartans outshot the Bears 15–4 and Bazin recorded two saves for the match. The game, which pitted the 10th-ranked Tartans against the 22nd-ranked Bears, did not disappoint those in attendance, with both teams displaying the kind of talent that has led them to national recognition this season.

“We need to be confident in our team and our ability to put the ball in the net and get results in UAA,” Hall said. “[UAA] teams are a little bit better, but we have to get over this mental hurdle of winning some conference games.”

The team travels to Chicago to take on another UAA rival, the University of Chicago Saturday.