Lehigh tripped up by Towson
TOWSON, Md. – The Lehigh men’s soccer team fell in their road-opener on Sunday by a score of 2-1 against Towson. Junior Joe Puleo notched his fourth goal of the season and senior keeper Jonathan Nydell made five saves on the day. With the defeat, the Mountain Hawks fall to 2-2-1 in 2010.
For the third time in five matches, the Brown and White allowed the first goal when Towson’s Marco Mangione put the Tigers ahead with a penalty kick in the 24th minute. It was the second penalty kick surrendered by Lehigh in the last three matches as Princeton also converted from the spot on September 7.
“I thought the penalty kick decision was a bad call,” Lehigh head coach Dean Koski said. “It’s frustrating. We played well defensively today, except for that penalty.”
Towson outshot Lehigh, 5-3, in the first half and mustered the only three shots on goal in the frame. The Tigers also held a slight edge in corner kicks at the half, 2-1.
Lehigh wasted no time going on the offensive in the second half as Puleo pulled the Brown and White even just 29 seconds out of the break on their first shot on goal in the match. Junior Dan Odenwelder played the ball to Puleo at the top of the left side of the box, where the junior took a touch to his left and ripped a shot inside the far post. The assist was Odenwelder’s first collegiate helper.
“Joe has done a nice job of keeping his shots on the frame,” Koski said. “He’s improved his percentage of shots on goal this year and he’s put himself in a good position to score goals.”
The tie did not last long, however, as Towson retook the lead 11 minutes later. Mangione converted his second goal of the afternoon off a feed from Kay Banjo to put the Tigers ahead for good, 2-1.
The Tigers outshot the Mountain Hawks by a 15-9 margin in the match. Towson keeper Angelo Viteritti made one save to help the hosts improve to 4-0 on the year.
Lehigh will try to return to its winning form next weekend when it travels to Charleston, S.C. for the College of Charleston Tournament. The Mountain Hawks will take on Furman on September 17 at 5 p.m. and host College of Charleston on September 19 at 1:30 p.m.