The Boston University men’s soccer team returned to Nickerson Field Wednesday night after a five-game road trip to take on rival The College of the Holy Cross (1-8, 1-2 Patriot League). Coming into this game, both teams were hungry to get a first season win. Despite some close scoring opportunities, the Terriers (0-9-1, 0-3 Patriot League) were not able to score and fell to the Crusaders 1-0.
Holy Cross junior midfielder Max Krause was able to recover a turnover pop-up ball from BU goalkeeper Edgar Schottland Levy and find the back of the net in the 17th minute of the game for his third goal of the season to put the Crusaders in front 1-0. Despite the Terriers exhibiting strong defense throughout the game, that early goal was what would be the game’s deciding factor.
BU head coach Neil Roberts said the early goal for the Crusaders was a bad break for the Terriers and very disappointing to see.
“We gave up the early goal out of nothing, and that was very disappointing,” Roberts said. “It was a bad clearance from us and it just kind of bounced around and ended up in the back of the net, so that was disappointing. [Holy Cross] really didn’t create a goal.”
The two teams had lots of back and forth throughout the first half, with BU trying to spread the field and use the space. Despite Holy Cross getting quality chances inside the box, BU was able to possess the ball for long stretches of time.
Holy Cross dominated the half in shots with six, including four on-goal, compared to just one shot for the Terriers. Despite letting a goal in early on, Schottland Levy recorded three saves. Holy Cross senior goalkeeper Bobby Hurstak was pretty unimportant as he did not record any saves at all in the game.
An early chance for the Terriers came not long after Krause’s goal when senior forward Matt McDonnell came into contact with Hurstak and nearly tied the game off a header.
Terriers junior Elias Lampis was a stronghold in the back for BU, doing a good job of stopping attacks from Krause throughout the first half.
The game started to get notably scrappy in the second half with the referees giving out multiple cards to players on both teams. Holy Cross senior defender Liam Butler was issued a red card in the 59th minute after a dangerous collision and was sent off the field. Overall, four cards were issued to the Crusaders and three to the Terriers.
Roberts cited the young team’s lack of experience in certain situations with the referees as a detriment in the second half.
“In the second half, we had five freshmen out there and a couple sophomores, and it just got a little bit too hectic for them,” Roberts said. “They got too frustrated with the ref and they have to understand that the refs are the refs and each ref is going to be so different, and they just have to deal with it … and move on and be a little bit more mature.”
McDonnell continued to seek scoring chances, coming within inches of a header goal near the end of the game just to have the ball bounce off the goal post.
Roberts praised McDonnell’s efforts on the offensive side and in helping cover the midfield as well.
“Matt is trying to do everything he can to try to help us get goals. He’s a goal scorer, he knows he’s a goal scorer, and he’s not getting a lot of service, and so it’s frustrating for him,” Roberts said. “He drops back into midfield more to help out there and so he’s doing everything he can to try to help us win games.”
McDonnell and the Terriers will have another chance to capture their first season win at home on Nickerson Field at 4 p.m. this Saturday against Colgate University.