Recap: No. 15 Seton Hall takes down UConn, 1-0Date: March 27, 2021
By: Dylan Camp
Seton Hall Athletics
On Saturday afternoon the No. 15 in the nation Seton Hall men’s soccer team faced off against their new conference foe in the Connecticut Huskies. In their first match three weeks prior, the two teams drew at nil-nil, that result was UConn’s only game they had not lost through their first four Big East Conference games this season. Seton Hall on the other hand entered only dropping one conference game thus far with a conference record of 4-1-2.
Early on in the action the Pirates had a flurry of chances to put one into the back of the net. Seton Hall had two great attempts in just the sixth minute of action, a big save by UConn goalie Jahmali Waite on CJ Tibbling was followed by a shot that just went wide of goal for the Pirates. Tibbling was looking to take command of the game early for the Pirates, he registered four shots in the first ten minutes of action. These four shots were followed by yet another great chance for Tibbling that ended up being called offsides. A near scoring opportunity for Tibbling as he received a great pass from defender Maurice Williams that would have given him a clear look at goal had he been onside.
In the 30th minute Seton Hall was back on the attack and had another great chance at goal coming off a set play on a corner kick. James Boote swung it in from the corner past the far post bating many of the UConn defenders, the Pirates had a man waiting to head it back to the near side where they had one or two good chances to punch in a goal as the ball was loose in front of the net. However, the Pirates were unable to get the ball through the maze of players in front and were unable to score despite the nice play off the corner kick.
At the end of the first half the game was still tied at zero, despite what seemed like an unequal opportunity first half. The Pirates had double the number of shots at 8-4 and higher quality scoring chances despite the equal one shot on goal for each side through the first 45 minutes. Andreas Nota’s only action of the first half came in the 37th minute on UConn’s first shot on goal of the afternoon by Giancarlo Vaccaro. Nota made an incredible leaping save and punched the ball over the crossbar to keep the game knotted at zero heading into half.
Both teams came out of the locker room looking to break their scoreless streaks against each other this season. The Pirates and Huskies each had several shots in the early minutes of the half, only one of which went on goal that being a shot by the Pirates Luca Dahn. Andrea Borg also had a clean look at goal shortly into the second half, he was about fifteen yards out but sent one just over the bar, a dangerous opportunity again yielding nothing for Seton Hall.
Finally at the 58:30 mark the scoreless tie was broken as the Pirates cracked the scoreboard off another great corner kick from Boote. He was able to connect with Mo Williams at the far post as he was able to get an easy tap in header to give the Pirates the 1-0 lead. This goal proved to be the only necessary tally for the Hall as they were able to keep Nota’s clean sheet and finish out the game with the score staying at 1-0.
The story of the game had to be how strong the Pirates looked off of set pieces. Boote generated tons of dangerous opportunities off of corner kicks and free kicks alike. Many of the Pirates best opportunities of the day came off of passes from Boote and these strong set pieces may be key for the Pirates moving forward as they hope to make deep runs in the Big East and NCAA tournaments.
After a strong effort resulting in a 1-0 win against Connecticut, Seton Hall has two more regular season conference games remaining as they finish up their schedule at Villanova and Providence on each of the next two Saturdays.
Dylan Camp can be reached at email@example.com.
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