Following a string of up-and-down non-conference results to begin the season, the No. 16 Georgetown men’s soccer team sought to replicate the same hot run through the Big East conference they mustered the previous year. The Hoyas responded with a bang, defeating the Seton Hall Pirates 1-0 on Friday in South Orange, N.J., and notched an important win to begin what they hope is a dominant run to the postseason.
The Hoyas (4-1-1, 1-0 Big East) came into this game looking for their first Big East win of the season, while the Pirates (4-2-1, 0-1 Big East) did everything in their power to stop that from happening. Early in the first half of what would soon prove to be a low-scoring affair, sophomore forward Jacob Murrell scored the opening, and only, goal of the game in the 15th minute.
Senior forward Marlon Tabora started the attacking sequence after taking a break-away pass up the right side of the pitch. In an impressive effort, Tabora weaved past five defenders to reach a dangerous position from within the box before notching a shot on goal. Although Pirates’ goalkeeper Mats Roorda managed to deflect the initial attempt, Tabora passed the ball high up for a second chance. Murrell, lurking on the left side of the box, found himself in the perfect position to launch an athletic left-footed finish past a helpless keeper and into a defender’s foot before bouncing straight into the net, giving the Hoyas a 1-0 lead.
The game would see six shots from each side, but neither team could make the ball find the net after Georgetown’s early goal. However, in the beginning of the second half, the Pirates looked energized from the break and ready to score. Senior defender and captain Kenny Nielsen found himself in a one-on-one matchup against Seton Hall midfielder James Boote, who drove to attempt a shot on goal. Nielsen, however, stood strong, shutting down the best chance the Pirates would get to score for the rest of the match.
Stellar performances by Murrell, Tabora, senior midfielder Trevor Burns and senior midfielder Kyle Linhares secured the victory for the Hoyas. Though Georgetown would have possession of the ball for the majority of the second half, the Pirates were able to steal the ball towards the end of the match and took a difficult shot from the left side that senior goalkeeper Ryan Schewe swatted with ease. Schewe’s one save wound up being the game high, while Burns and Linhares had one shot on goal each.
The Hoyas continued their strong start to the season’s conference play with a dominant 2-0 home win against the No. 12 James Madison Dukes on Sept. 19. Georgetown will travel to Cincinnati, Ohio, for a showdown against the Xavier Musketeers (4-2-1, 1-0 Big East) on Saturday at 7:00 p.m.