Inspired Second Half Comes Up Short as Wooster Drops Home Finale 2-1 to Gators

Mouhamet Ndiaye

WOOSTER, Ohio – On multiple occasions, it appeared as if The College of Wooster men's soccer team had a late equalizer left in them, but a solid goalkeeping effort from the Gators and too little time left Wooster with a 2-1 defeat on Wednesday evening at Carl Dale Memorial Field.

Allegheny College (5-10-1, 2-5-1 North Coast Athletic Conference) road a two-goal first half to victory, with the opener coming in the 10th minute off the foot of Jon Sion, who redirected a cross from the left flank by Danny Reid for the close-range finish.

Few offensive opportunities materialized for the Fighting Scots (6-10-1, 1-6-1 NCAC) in the opening half, with Allegheny outshooting Wooster 10-5.

In the 34th minute, a cross from Reid deflected off a Wooster defender's head and into the goal for the game-winning tally.

The Scots, however, came out with a higher pace in the second half, limiting the Gators to seven shots and one corner kick compared to Wooster's 10 shots, with three coming on frame, and five corners.

Less than five minutes into the second stanza, sophomore Manny Burton delivered a long throw-in into the box, where senior Mouhamet Ndiaye rose above his defender and connected for an arching header over the goalkeeper and into the right upper-90 to halve the deficit with 40 minutes remaining.

Fast-forward to the 81st minute, where junior Andrew Klein found himself as the recipient of a one-time opportunity from six yards out. A low driven cross from Burton afforded Klein the close-range shot before Allegheny's David Stekla made a diving stretch save to deny the potential equalizer.

Five minutes later, a yellow card for delay of game on Stekla afforded Wooster an indirect kick from the top of the 18-yard box. Lining up were senior Bob Beall and sophomore Paulo Nunes, with Beall instigating the initial tap. Nunes' attempt deflected off the Gators' wall and just off frame.

On the ensuing possession, Allegheny's Tolossaa Hassan took it himself 40 yards on the counter and nearly put away a bending far-post attempt to seal the game.

With 90 seconds remaining in regulation, Klein, coming in from the right corner of the 18-yard box, cut to his favored left and placed a well-struck ball inside the far post, only to again be denied by a diving Stekla.

Allegheny finished with a 17-15 advantage in total shots while Wooster held the corner kick lead, 7-4. Sophomore 'keeper Will Collis ended with four saves compared to Stekla's three.

Up next, the Scots wrap up the 2017 season at Wabash College (9-5-1, 3-3-1 NCAC) with a noon kickoff in Crawfordsville, Ind.