BRISTOL, R.I. – The Roger Williams University Men's Soccer team survived a tough, scrappy game against Curry College Wednesday evening, holding on for a 1-0 win.
The action was aggressive early on by both teams. It was contentious in the opening minutes of the game, with the two sides battling for position on passes and second balls.
Hunter Graham (North Yarmouth, Maine) tried to catch the Colonel defense off guard with a long strike in the 10th minute. He put up a shot from about 25 yards out on the left side but served it up right at Curry keeper Paul DeMaio (North Andover, Mass.).
Colby Decker (Colchester, Conn.) gave Curry a scare in the 24th minute. Stathi Panagiotidis (Norwalk, Conn.) fed him a pass up the middle, giving Decker a chance to bend one in. However, he was unable to hook the shot into the corner.
Then two minutes later, Tyler Kuchenbecker (Wellesley, Mass.) fired a shot just a bit high and wide right off of a cross to the left side.
Curry managed its first legit scoring chance in the 27th minute. Ben Silvia (Dartmouth, Mass.) managed to get through the Hawk defense and had a clean look at the top of the box. However his shot just sailed wide left.
RWU's best shot to score in the first half came with four seconds left on the clock. Jordan Lach (Norton, Mass.) blasted a shot from just inside the left corner of the box. However, Curry keeper Dylan Griffin (Hornell, N.Y.), who came in with under four minutes left in the half on an injury sub, made a crucial jumping one-handed save to keep the game scoreless going into halftime.
In the 58th minute, the Hawks had four opportunities to score at close range but could not find the back of the net. Kuchenbecker, Kabine Conde (Philadelphia, Pa.), and Sean Janson (Avon, Conn.) combined for four shots in the span of eight seconds. Three of those shots deflected off of Curry defenders, with the final attempt stopped by Griffin.
RWU's persistence would pay off in the 61st minute. Nicholas Sanchez (Franklin, Mass.) booted a long pass upfield to the middle to a streaking Kuchenbecker. He was able to bounce the ball off his head to slow down the momentum, then make his way into the box. He would bend a shot to the left corner for the 1-0 Roger Williams lead.
Roger Williams would hold on to the lead and escape with the win, despite a small scuffle at the end of the game that led to four cards between both teams.
Edmund Geschickter (Brookline, Mass.) had two saves in the shutout, while Griffin also had a pair of stops.
On Saturday, Roger Williams (7-5-3, 3-2-0 CCC) will face Wentworth Institute of Technology while Curry (8-7-1, 2-3-0 CCC) hosts Endicott. (Game Recap Courtesy of Roger Williams Sports Information)