Hartford Gains Momentum as AE Playoffs Approach

Image: hartfordhawks.com

Image: hartfordhawks.com

Thomas Hummel , Sports Editor

The Hartford Men’s soccer team picked up a huge victory Saturday afternoon as they knocked off America East rival Binghamton, 2-1, on Al-Marzook Field. The Hawks got early goals from Nir Gvili and Addrian Knights-Brown to take a 2-0 lead into halftime. The team was able to hold off a late charge by Binghamton to keep the score 2-1, which would evidently be the contest’s final score. 

With the victory, Hartford (4-8-3, 2-4-0 AE) now has six points in the America East standings, currently tied for fifth place with the Bearcats (7-5-1, 2-3-0 AE) and UMBC. The Hawks’ victory broke a seventh-place tie with NJIT and UMass Lowell.

The players took the field and the game was underway. In the 22nd minute, Nir Gvili took a high-arching entry pass from Nate Becher. Gvili gained possession in front of the net before sending it high out of the reach of Binghamton Goalkeeper Mats Roorda to make it 1-0 early. Eight minutes later, Knights-Browne received a pass from Patrick Gryczewski at the top of the box and blasted a low line drive past Roorda to give the Hawks a 2-0 edge going into halftime. 

With Binghamton pressing late in the second half, the Bearcats’ Noah Luescher scored on a free-kick, which took an awkward bounce past Hartford keeper Rotem Fadida. Luescher’s goal cut the Hawks’ advantage to 2-1, but Binghamton would not get any closer. The Hawks were able to hold off this late push and keep the score 2-1 until the final whistle blew. 

The Hawks have two games remaining, both coming against teams fighting to qualify for the America East postseason. Hartford will enjoy a midweek bye, before traveling to face UMass Lowell (2-9-1, 1-3-0 AE) on Saturday, Oct. 23, and closing the regular season at home against NJIT (3-8-1, 1-4-0) on Monday, Nov. 1.