Two Second Half Goals by Kroschwitz Help Wildcats Rally Past Penn 2-1
Sept. 24, 2013
VILLANOVA, Pa. - The first two goals of freshman Max Kroschwitz's career helped rally Villanova to a 2-1 victory over Penn in a Philly Soccer Six match on a beautiful early fall afternoon here at the Soccer Complex. The two goals came in 4:24 span late in the second half to help the Wildcats even their overall record at 3-3-1 while the Quakers fell to 2-4-0.
"Our guys showed a lot of resiliency today," stated Wildcats head coach Tom Carlin. "We took care of a lot of the little things that result in scoring chances and victories. We have done it well in spurts this season but I thought we did that for as long as we have today in any game this season."
Penn used some nice dribbling work by Nicky Yin to create its goal at 29:36. Yin dribbled in from his left back position and eluded a pair of charging Wildcat defenders. He then slipped a cross through the box that found Duke Lacroix and Lacroix deposited the ball inside the right post to stake the Quakers to a 1-0 lead.
It was an advantage they would hold for much of the contest.
"I thought we played well in the first half," stated Carlin of the 1-0 deficit his squad faced after 45 minutes. "We made a couple of mental errors that gave them quality chances and they converted one."
In his conversation with his team at the break, Carlin emphasized the import of this 45 minutes, with a BIG EAST opener against a strong Butler team awaiting on Saturday night.
"The second half is when games are won and lost," he says. "We used our depth and got a great lift from the bench. I thought it was a total team victory."
Michael Manta, Padraic McCullaugh, Damilola Adetola and Hayden Harr were among the Wildcats who made key contributions as reserves. In fact, it was a shortly after Kroschwitz returned to the action in the 74th minute after a spell on the bench that helped ignite the scoring burst as the Wildcats frantically searched for the equalizer.
Senior Dylan Renna worked the ball along the right side and found Kroschwitz on a run. Renna's low cross was perfectly timed and Kroschwitz (Pipersville, Pa.) re-directed the ball past Penn goalkeeper Tyler Kinn at 75:31 to allow the Cats to draw even.
"Renna did a great job of finding me," noted Kroschwitz of the first score.
A few minutes later, another nifty run, this one on the left side by sophomore Sean Sheridan, gave the Wildcats their first lead of the day. Sheridan worked his way past the Quakers back wall and led Kroschwitz, who arrived just as the Quakers defense and Kinn were closing in. Kroschwitz got his foot on the ball and sent it into the right side of the net to earn his first collegiate game-winner.
"I knew Sean would play a great ball in," Kroschwitz stated. "I just timed my run and crashed the goal."
The Wildcats would need one more quality save from goalkeeper Andrew Weakly - he would end the afternoon with nine - to keep the Quakers from tying the game again. Weakly came through in the 86th minute when Sam Hayward sent a blast toward the net by squaring his body and gathering in the shot.
The win evened VU's record at 1-1 in Soccer Six action. They will now train their eyes on the BIG EAST regular season, which opens on Saturday at Butler.