After playing 110 minutes of soccer on a hot September afternoon, the Slippery Rock University men’s soccer team came away with a 0-0 tie against the second-place Gannon golden knights.
“That’s supposedly one of the best teams in the conference and we just played them off the field.” Slippery Rock head coach Steve Small said.
In any 0-0 game, the goalies will be the highlight, and SRU continued to be led by senior goalkeeper Jonathan Sharp. Sharp played all 110 minutes and saved seven shots on goal. Sharp remains the number one goalie in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) in save percentage with .851; that percentage also places sharp at 20th in the nation.
“Same as all season, he’s been our rock at the back, he has kept us in every game,” Small said. “He’s been fantastic.”
Offensively, the game was close from a statistical standpoint, as Slippery Rock led in shots by just one (14-13) and Gannon led in shots on goal by three (7-4). SRU also only managed one more corner kick (6) than Gannon (5).
Although the box score may seem close, Small thinks that it doesn’t tell the story of the game.
“We needed the ball to bounce our way just one time, and unfortunately we just didn’t get that bounce,” Small said. “We definitely cranked it up, we were the better side in 110 minutes of soccer.”
Junior midfielder George Oakley led the offensive charge, putting the most pressure on Gannon’s goalie with his team-leading four shots, one of which was on goal.
The other three shots on goal came from three different sources: junior forward Igor McVay, junior midfielder Anthony Werth (two total shots) and junior defender Patrick Sullivan. Freshman midfielder Cory Olix also attempted three shots on the day.
Sunday marked the Rock’s third tie on the year, and second straight. Despite that, Slippery Rock has stayed out of the cellar because of the two points the accrued from conference play for the two ties, and they are looking forward to keep obtaining positives from their season.
“We always talk about the positives we take away from a game,” Small said. “We learned from the mistakes that we have had and get ready for another game.”
Slippery Rock will be back at James Egli field on Wednesday, September 27th when they play Seton Hill in their third conference game at one o’clock.