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Men's soccer comes up short against Rider

The La Salle men’s soccer team was on the wrong side of a 4-1 decision this past Saturday against the Rider Broncs. Junior forward Kevin Lydic scored the lone goal for the Explorers to avoid the shutout. The goal was Lydic’s third of the season, and he is now tied for the team lead with freshman Ryan Richter.

Rider was able to get on the board early in the game, as the Broncs scored in just the fourth minute. Head coach Pat Farrell thought that the team came out a little flat.

“College soccer [depends] a lot on energy and emotion, and they just had more than us from the start,” Farrell said. “For every game, we try to be prepared, mentally, but they came out with more emotion than us.”

The team has fallen behind in all but one game this season. Farrell believes that giving up an early lead snowballed into a larger deficit.

“You have to take chances when you fall behind, and that opens up diagonal runs that the other team can score on,” Farrell said.

Indeed, La Salle allowed all four goals before breaking out with Lydic’s strike in the 77th minute on a pass from junior Brian Barry. It was Barry’s first assist of the season.

Going into the game, the defense had been playing well of late.

“[Of the] things we’ve done this year…we’ve been very organized defensively,” Farrell said. “We’d only allowed three goals in our last four games.”

Unfortunately for the Explorers, they could not stifle this Rider offense that has scored 14 goals this season, including nine in its past three games.

The Explorers were able to outshoot the Broncs by a 17-11 margin. However, only nine of La Salle’s shots were on target, which can be credited to urgent shots fired late in the game. Rider was on goal with eight of their team’s shots.

So far this season, Farrell has employed a goalie-by-committee between red-shirt sophomore Kyle Quigley and juniors Dan Pfeiffer and Andrew Bernhard. Quigley had logged the majority of minutes in net before suffering a broken arm at Penn. Farrell will likely use a two-man rotation with Pfeiffer and Bernhard heading into A-10 play.

“Competition makes everyone tougher,” Farrell said. “We have to make sure everyone is prepared mentally.”

The start of conference play is right around the corner, and Farrell hopes to have his team ready to compete for the A-10 crown.

We have to make an impact in the A-10,” Farrell said. “Everything up until then is just to get ready for those games.”

The Explorers continue their road trip with games against Bucknell and Temple, before starting their A-10 schedule at Fordham on Oct. 12. They will return home to play Dayton on Oct. 19.

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