Providence, R.I. – The Johnson & Wales University men's soccer team hosted the University of Saint Joseph's (CT) for an important conference matinee on Wednesday at the Scotts Miracle Gro Athletic Complex. The play reflected the abilities of two playoff teams as both clubs had opportunities and applied consistent pressure. The Wildcats were able to wrestle away the victory as they held off the Blue Jays 2-1 in the chilly October conditions.
Saint Joseph's CT: 8-5 (5-3-0 GNAC)
Johnson & Wales: 12-2 (7-0 GNAC)
JP Rioux (JWU) : 1 goal
Kevin Reilly (JWU) : 1 goal
DeAnte Anderson (USJ) : 1 goal
USJ: John Griffin (L, 4-4) 7 saves
JWU: Austin Scoggin (W, 10-2) 5 saves
The match had a playoff feel from the start as both teams were stout in the middle of the field and had scoring chances early in the contest. The Wildcats struck first as JP Rioux found the back corner of the net in the 35th minute assisted by Nick Gutekunst. It was Rioux's tenth goal and Gutekunst's eighth assist of the season.
The 1-0 lead for JWU lasted for sixteen minutes when Kevin Reilly recorded an unassisted goal in the 51st. Reilly settled the ball at the eighteen and blasted a shot that sped past the keeper on his left side for his third goal of his career.
With a 2-0 advantage, the Wildcats were stunned at the 73rd minute as DeAnte Anderson converted a corner to cut the lead in half. From there, JWU's focus shifted to defense and the Wildcats were able to keep the Blue Jays from the obtaining the equalizer.
The Wildcats took the shot advantage from the Blue Jays 12 to 7 and the corners were controlled by JWU 8-4.
The Wildcats host Norwich on Friday for another pivotal Great Northeast Athletic Conference match at 7 p.m.