The Castleton men’s soccer team, after a deadlocked first half, gave up two early second half goals Friday night, losing 2-0 to Clarkson.
The defeat puts the Spartans at 1-3 on the season after dropping both games of the Huskey Challenge at Hannaford Field. Clarkson on the other hand, moves to 3-1.
After a back-and-forth first half highlighted by strong defensive play from both sides, Castleton came out in the opening minutes of the second half poised to strike. Jacob Godfrey gave the opposing side a scare with a shot from inside the box that went just wide and Jack Kingdon looked to capitalize on a corner kick several minutes later.
It was the Golden Knights, however, that would draw first blood in the 53rd minute. Brandon Bahr took the ball to the Spartan goal line before sending a cross in to Mack Walton who put it right past the outstretched arms of goalie Aaron Parker.
It took less than a minute for Clarkson to get their second of two goals. Parker made two diving saves before the ball found itself at the feet of Drew Lewis who buried his shot in the back of the net.
A penalty kick was awarded to the Spartans off a hand ball in the 64th minute. Kingdon stepped up to take the shot, however Clarkson goalie Ian Roeloffs made a diving save to halt Castleton’s momentum.
Freshman forward Seraphin Iradukunda continued to show impressive footwork and ball control as he dashed around the Clarkson defense throughout the game. This performance followed a strong, two goal game on Tuesday in a 3-1 rout of SUNY Poly. Coach John O’Connor spoke about his player after the game.
“Seraphin is great, although he still has a lot to learn,” he said.
He also mentioned how good it is for the team to have a player who can dribble by defenders in one-on-one situations.
Clarkson was in control for much of the game, having the advantage in shots at 15-11, and 9-5 on goal. Parker finished the game with seven saves on nine shots, while Roeloffs had five saves and the shutout.
The Spartans will be traveling to New Hampshire Wednesday to take on Keene State. The Owls will enter the match looking to build off their first win of the season last Saturday under the guidance of their ten veteran seniors. Meanwhile the much younger Spartans will be looking to gain some forward momentum heading into the rest of the season.