Three Second-Half Goals Push Men's Soccer to NCAA Second Round

MEDFORD – The No. 5 Tufts University men's soccer team advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament following a 5-1 win over SUNY Maritime College at Bello Field on Saturday afternoon.

Freshman Woovin Shin tallied his first two career goals in the victory.

The Jumbos improve to 15-2-2 on the season with the NCAA opening-round victory. The Privateers see their season come to a close at 12-10-2.

Tufts returns to action on Sunday at 3 pm in the NCAA second round. They host WPI, who beat Nazareth 2-0 in the other first-round game at Bello Field.

Tufts jumped on the attack early as junior Calvin Aroh sent a ball forward for classmate Travis Van Brewer. He found senior Gavin Tasker on the left wing who chipped a pass into the box to classmate Brett Rojas, who redirected the pass into the back of the goal just 30 seconds into the contest.

The Privateers tied the contest following a foul on Tufts. Sophomore Thomas Kropp sent a free kick from the left of the box. However, the Jumbos failed to clear and the ball went off a Tufts defender's head and into the goal nearly seven minutes into the action.

The Jumbos regained control of the pace as a senior Zach Lane and Van Brewer fired shots that nearly missed wide and forced Privateers goalkeeper Michael Rodriguez to make a save on, respectively.

Tufts applied pressure following the shot opportunities and would capitalize. Sophomore Zach Seigelstein took a corner kick on the first play after entering the contest. His right-footed service found senior Joe Braun on the back post and he headed home his sixth goal of the season to give the Jumbos a 2-1 lead in the 24th minute.

In the closing minutes of the half junior Max Jacobs and freshman Sean Traynor had near misses that could have extended the Tufts lead, but both shots went just wide and the teams headed to the break with the Jumbos leading 2-1.

Tufts applied pressure throughout the first 20 minutes of the second half. Near-misses by junior Alex Ratzan and Jacobs went wide left. Lane earned enough free space to fire a strong shot, but Rodriguez made a diving stop to corral the ball. Just a minute later Lane fired another low shot that beat Rodriguez, however senior Justin Forrest made the defensive save to keep the score at 2-1.

Jumbo sophomore Will Raphael added to the near misses as a corner kick was deflected out to the top of the box from where he fired a shot from that sailed wide left. Though Tufts was dictating the game, play went into the final 20 minutes with the hosts holding just the one-goal lead.

However, the Jumbos would break it open. They scored their third goal of the contest after strong passing ended up at freshman Woovin Shin inside the box. He found Ratzan at the top of the box who sent a pass further along to the right for junior Mati Cano. Cano sent a give-and-go pass back to Ratzan who fired a missile to extend the Jumbo lead with 11 minutes on the clock.

Just four minutes later Shin recorded his first career goal after beautiful passing by the junior duo of Ratzan and Cano. Shin added another tally with under five minutes to play in the contest.

The Jumbos outshot the Privateers, 25-2. They also earned nine corner kicks to just one for SUNY Maritime.

Sophomore goalkeeper Erich Kindermann improves to 5-0-1 on the season for the Jumbos. He did not see a shot on goal off the foot of a Maritime player. Rodriguez made eight saves on 13 shots on goal.

Tufts improved its NCAA mark to 22-5-2 with the victory and will play NEWMAC runner-up WPI on Sunday for a berth into the "Sweet 16."


Watch the Tufts Post-Game Press Conference ...