Arnold's Goal Sends Mids to Patriot League Title Game
Nov. 15, 2013
ANNAPOLIS, Md - Senior Dave Arnold'sgoal in the 58th minute advanced top-seeded Navy (14-3-2) past No. 4 Bucknell (13-6-1), 1-0, in the Patriot League Semifinals on Friday at the Glenn Warner Soccer Facility.
"Bucknell is a very good team, they have quality players across the board and their record reflects that. This was a good win," said head coach Dave Brandt.
Navy and Bucknell played a very even match through 90 minutes. The Bison held a slight edge in shots, 16-15, but the Mids had more offensive opportunities off corner kicks, 7-4. Both teams played through a scoreless tie after 45 minutes.
The Bison had their best offensive chance in the 28th minute of the match. Bison foward Jesse Klug found himself open at the top of the 18-yard box. Klug ripped a hard-liner at the net and it zipped across the body of net-minder Gavin Snyder. However, Klug's shot bounced off the far post and back into play to keep the score knotted at zero.
With the score tied at zero heading into the second half, Navy jumped out to an early 1-0 lead off the foot of Arnold in the 58th minute. Freshman Sam Bascomtook the ball to the right end line and then sent a pass back to Arnold, who hit a bouncing shot through traffic to give Navy the 1-0 lead. It was Arnold's third goal of the season.
"That goal was all Sam Bascom. He got it down in position and made a great pass. All I did was kick it in the net," said Arnold with a grin.
Navy's defense held its ground for the final 32 minutes. Mids' goalkeeper Snyder recorded five of his game-high eight saves in the final minutes of the contest to improve to 13-0 between the pipes for Navy this season.
Navy will seek to win its first Patriot League Tournament title in its fourth appearance. Navy also advanced to the league's championship game in 1995, 1996 and 1999.
A win in the Patriot League Championship on Sunday would give Navy an automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament. Navy is seeking its 11th NCAA Tournament berth and its first since 1988.
"The goal all year has been to win the Patriot League and advance to the NCAA's. Sunday is our opportunity to accomplish that goal," said Brandt.
The victory over Bucknell extends Navy's winning streak to 13 games, the longest-active streak in the NCAA.
Navy will play the No. 3 seed Holy Cross, on Sunday at 1:00 PM at the Glenn Warner Soccer Facility for the 2013 Patriot League Championship.