Nov. 11, 2011
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Navy men's soccer team battled top-seeded American to a scoreless tie for 110 minutes, but Matt Makowski's penalty-kick goal in round No. 5 proved to be the difference as the Eagles escaped a Navy upset bid with a 4-3 advantage in penalty kicks.
The match's official result is as a draw, ending Navy's season at 7-7-5 overall. The appearance in the Patriot League Tournament was the Midshipmen's first in 10 years and drops Navy's tournament record to 3-5-3 overall. In all three of Navy's ties during the tournament's history, the Mids would eventually lose in penalty kicks.
The five ties this year are tied for the most in school history (1989).
"This was argubly our most legitimate and best performance of the year. We were on the front foot the whole time and attacking on the offensive end. We were dangerous with the ball and our wings played great on the flank and Joseph Greenspan (Fr. / Westfield, N.J. played very well up top," said Navy head coach Dave Brandt. "What we want to do was working very well. I thought our backs were tremendous. They didn't get anything in the normal course of play, except for one dangerous cross in the second half. It was an outstanding team effort, and unfortunately, we came up short in penalty kicks."
Navy carried the play for a majority of the game, having several good chances in all three stages of the game. The first good chance came midway through the first half, when sophomore Alex Wilson (Phoenix, Ariz.) sent a low, hard shot from about 25 yards on a free kick that surprised Makowski and the goalie had to make a diving save to get a hand on it, resulting in a Navy corner kick.
After an even second half, Navy's David Jackson (Jr. / Forest, Va.) had a golden chance late in the second overtime session, as he beat a defender to the middle of the box, but cut across the ball a little too much and sent a shot just to the right of the post to send the game into penalty kicks.
Brandt decided to insert sophomore goalkeeper Aaron Dupere
(Royal Palm Beach, Fla.) into the contest for the shootout and he came up big after Navy fell behind 1-0 after round one.
"We feel like Aaron reads penalty kicks very well. Max has played very well the last few games, but it's something we wanted to do," said Brandt.
Dupere guessed right on a Colin Siegfried attempt that he turned aside tying the penalty kick session at 1-1 after two rounds.
Both teams scored in rounds three and four, with Navy's attempts coming from Zach Davis (So. / Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Jackson, to send the shootout into round five tied at 3-3. Navy sent the shot high over the crossbar, while Makowski, AU's goalkeeper, stepped up and sent a shot into the right corner to give the Eagles a 4-3 penalty-kick victory.
Navy outshot American, 17-13, and each team had three corner kicks. American was whistled for 17 fouls to Navy's 16. Max Renaldo (Jr. / Tampa, Fla.) recorded his second straight shutout with four saves, while American's Makowski made seven saves in regulation.
"I feel real positive about things. The way we played today is how we want to play. We were aggressive and very dangerous with the ball, and then composed on defense. We certainly gave a great effort but it's disappointing to lose this way," added Brandt.
The loss ends Navy's season with a 7-7-5 record. Navy will bring back nine starters from this year's team for next year, losing senior starters Sam Miller (Tulsa, Okla.), Billy Sweetman (Austin, Texas) and Wes Powell (Jackson, N.J.). The team will return 57 of the 67 points (85.1 percent) of its scoring.
# GO NAVY #