Men’s soccer adds two non-league wins, Tis’ game winner marks first collegiate goal

Sophomore+striker+Lawrence+Aydlett+rockets+a+shot+on+goal+in+Lafayettes+shutout+victory+against+Drexel.+%28Photo+courtesy+of+GoLeopards%29

Sophomore striker Lawrence Aydlett rockets a shot on goal in Lafayette’s shutout victory against Drexel. (Photo courtesy of GoLeopards)

The men’s soccer team (3-1 overall, 0-0 conference) clinched a dramatic 2-1 out-of-conference win against Mount St. Mary’s on Friday thanks to a buzzer-beater goal scored by freshman midfielder Sebastian Tis. The team then went on to defeat Drexel 2-0 to continue the non-conference winning streak.

Sophomore forward Lawrence Aydlett scored the first goal of the match in the 15th minute. However, Mount Saint Mary’s responded quickly, when the Mountaineers tallied a goal just five minutes later. 

The game remained tied at 1-1 for almost 70 minutes before Lafayette’s senior goalkeeper Alex Sutton sent the ball up the field to sophomore midfielder Carter Houlihan in the last play of the game. Houlihan headed the ball in front of Tis, and with less than 20 seconds left in the game Tis settled the ball and scored from just inside the 18-yard box. This goal put the Leopards on top right before the final three whistles sounded, and marked Tis’ first collegiate goal.

The sensational finish from Tis came after the Leopards dominated the game on the box score, leading 22-8 in shots (10-2 on goal), and 7-1 in corner kicks. Sutton played all 90 minutes and tallied one save with one goal allowed in, a testament to the team’s overall dominance.  

Tis was named Patriot League Rookie of the Week for this goal and his overall performance.

“It means a lot because I knew coming in that I want to prove myself to the other guys and play well,” he said of the honor. “Maybe I’ll come in for 10 to 15 minutes at the end of the half to give some of the guys that have been playing a break. When I come in, I don’t want to drop the level — I want to play up to their standards as well.” 

Junior midfielder Benji Grossi emphasized just how important the freshmen are to the team dynamic this year.

“It’s definitely a special year for us. The team has really clicked … Since the first day of preseason the freshmen have automatically stepped up. They know their role,” Grossi said.

“We were dominating the game … and to have [Tis] step up like that was amazing, especially for a young guy like him. It’s something to really be proud of,” Grossi said. “All of the guys are really happy for him and we expect a lot more from him, so hopefully he can keep it rolling.” 

Following the victory over Mount St. Mary, the Leopards then went on to face Drexel in Philadelphia on Tuesday, Sept. 6, winning 2-0. In their second shut out of the season, Lafayette once again dominated all facets of the game. The Leopards put 12 shots on goal to Drexel’s nine, and Sutton notched another four saves. Lafayette’s goals came from Aydlett and senior forward Marcos Kitromilides.

The game was also notable for the tensions throughout, with foul totals and ejections significantly higher than other games the Leopards have played to this point. Lafayette managed to shut out Drexel despite totaling 16 fouls to Drexel’s 11. However, Drexel had two people ejected from the game while Lafayette only had one.

The Leopards will travel back down to Philadelphia tonight to face Temple for a 7 p.m. out-of-conference match. The team is performing well in out-of-conference play this year, which Grossi hopes will translate to league play.

“Last year we struggled out-of-conference. So this year, even after losing the first game, we’ve bounced back really well and I’m really happy and excited for what’s to come,” Grossi said.