Springfield College’s Brad Deckel ran from the right side of the net to the left side as the crossing kick from Danny Murphy flew through the air. Deckel elevated into the air and placed a shot via a header into the right side of the net past Coast Guard goaltender Jake Sorenson. The goal put the Pride up, 3-0, 56:24 into the game. Springfield never looked back from there.
“We work really hard during the season and preseason scoring off set pieces because we know those are free opportunities to score goals,” said Deckel. “We have been through that situation probably a hundred times. I know where Danny is going to put it and he knows where everyone is going to run. It doesn’t work out every time, but it worked out that time that I got open.”
The Pride defeated the Coast Guard Academy, 3-0, Saturday afternoon at Brock Affleck Field. Springfield goals were scored by Deckel, Keon Haji, and Harry Davis.
The game was the Pride’s first NEWMAC game and victory of the season.
“Its unbelievably important,” said Pride head coach Steffen Siebert on the importance of winning the team’s first conference game. “We talked about it. We need ten points to make the top five because our conference is so close. Last year six out of seven games we played were all decided by one goal. We want to make sure we get that first goal because that’s crucial. After that we had a little bit of confidence. The boys were so focused and ready in those first 15 minutes.”
Davis put the first points of the day on the board for the Pride 2:37 into the game when he corralled a crossing pass from Murphy and finished to put Springfield up, 1-0.
It was a physical battle on both sides. Four yellow cards and 35 fouls were given out in total throughout the game.
“I’m really excited about the guys being able to keep cool heads and battle,” said Siebert on the team’s reaction to physical play. “I don’t think it was a dirty battle. Both teams played really hard. We knew that coming in they were going to be a physical team, but we were ready. If we needed to be physical we could be physical as well. But I thought both teams played a fair game today.”
The second goal of the contest came at the 27:26 mark when Keon Haji made space in front of the net and put a shot tightly into the bottom left corner.
The Pride will play a non-conference game against Stevens Tech on Sunday.