The Montclair State University’s men’s soccer team has been on quite the tear lately. The Red Hawks have won five games in a row, improving their record to an impressive 8-3-1. They are in fourth place in the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) behind William Paterson University. The streak reached new heights when Montclair State defeated Yeshiva College by a one-sided score of 7-1 on Monday. Head coach Todd Tumelty was impressed by his team’s outing despite the team’s slow start to the game.
“I thought we played well,” Tumelty said following the game. “I think we are gonna improve every day, day in and day out. I think the team’s done that so far. I was a little disappointed in the way we came out and started, but I think the results were good in the end.”
One statistic to point out just how dominant Montclair has been so far in the season is their goal and shot differentials. They have outshot their opponents 198-119 for a +79 differential. Furthermore, the Red Hawks have shot 93 of those on goal, more than double the opposition’s 42 for a +51 differential. Most impressive, however, is their goal differential. Montclair State has outscored their opponents 43-12 this season, scoring more than three and a half times more than their opponent for a goal differential of +31.
“We want to make sure we get offensively involved into the game,” Tumelty said. “The way we score goals is by getting balls in behind the defense and having an opportunity to give yourself more opportunities to score goals and that allows you to score more goals.”
The contributions have come from many different players. Leading the way so far is senior midfielder Mike Taranto who leads the team in goals, scoring eight goals and capturing two assists. Breakout freshman forward Chaz Burnett has been impressive, scoring seven goals and three assists. Junior forward Rafael Tercci has scored six goals and two assists.
Monday’s game opened when Yeshiva got on a semi-breakaway, but Montclair State’s senior goalkeeper, Taylor Culp, made a big save at the 8:42 mark in the first half. Five minutes later, senior defenseman Jorge De Lan Bandera head-butted a corner kick from junior Kevin Simek in for Montclair State’s first goal of the game. Not long after, Taranto sniped a laser shot for the second, and Simek headed one from sophomore Stefan Koroman to give the Red Hawks a 3-0 lead. Yeshiva would respond quickly, when a free kick from Dan Cohen sneaked past the Red Hawks’ wall and past Culp for their first and only goal of the game, sending the game into halftime with Montclair leading 3-1.
The second half would begin in a similar way the first half began: with Jorge De Lan Bandera head-butting a corner kick from freshman midfielder Guiseppe Margiottiello in for his second goal of the game. Add in a penalty kick goal from freshman forward Chaz Burnett, an own goal from Yeshiva and some impressive dribbling moves leading to a goal from freshman midfielder Jose Rodriguez, and you have the perfect recipe for a 7-1 Red Hawk win.
“I think we took an early loss that we didn’t think we should have,” Tumelty said. “But like I said, I think the team’s coming along, and I’m pleased with the way the season’s going so far.”
The men’s soccer team hosted Mitchell College on Wednesday, Oct. 4, before going on the road to Rowan University on Saturday, Oct. 7.