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Men’s soccer wins third East Coast title

By Ariel Wittenberg

Section: Sports

November 19, 2010

The fourth-seeded Brandeis men’s soccer caused a huge upset against second-seeded Western New England College during the weekend, leading them to win the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III New England title for the third year.

Brandeis scored four unanswered goals, two in each half, to win in a game that ended 4-2. Kyle Feather ’14 scored his fourth goal of the season in the 11th minute to start the scoring when he headed home a free kick by midfielder Kyle Gross ’11. The Judges gained their second point to double the lead in the 23rd minute on an unassisted goal by midfielder Joe Eisenbies ’13. Though the number of shots on the goal were even in the first half at 7-7, tournament MVP and Brandeis goalie Taylor Bracken ’11 made five stops to keep the Golden Bears off the board.

In the second half, forward Steve Keuchkarian ’11 scored just 3:48 into the stanza on a penalty kick for what would be the game-winner. Seven minutes later, sophomore midfielder Lee Russo ’13 scored his fifth goal of the tournament, and tenth of the season, on an assist from Feather.

Western New England College finally scored in the 74th minute on a free kick by Corey Howard that was converted by Justin Martins after a redirect by John Stather. Stather also converted a penalty kick at the 84:20 mark against Brandeis reserve goalkeeper Matt Lynch ’11 to round out the scoring.

Brandeis finished the game with a 15-13 shot advantage, but Bracken and Lynch’s seven total saves earned the win. Bracken earned his MVP honor by making 13 saves and allowing just one goal in a little more than 230 minutes in net in the tournament.

Brandeis, which closed the season with a record of 12-7-1, earned their third ECAC Tournament crown, to go with wins in 1994 and 2006. The Judges have now won six-straight ECAC tournament games. WNEC’s season comes to an end at 15-7-2.

The Judges win against the Bears came one day after the team upset top-seeded Bridgewater State University 3-0 the day before.

After nearly 40 scoreless minutes of play, the Judges broke through just before halftime when forward Evan Ersing ’13 found back Matt Hohmann ’11 at the edge of the box. Hohmann then ripped a shot into the top left corner of the goal, scoring his first career goal and points in his 62nd career game.

Brandeis doubled the lead in the 53rd minute, when Feather cleaned up a rebound in front of the net for his third goal of the season. Midfielder Joe Eisenbies ’13 added an extra insurance goal in the 84th minute on an assist from midfielder Nick George ’14.

For the game, Brandeis outshot Bridgewater State, 17-8, though the Bears owned a 5-1 edge in corner kicks. Bracken had four saves for the Judges to record his fifth shutout of the season and the team’s ninth, while BSU’s D.J. Siewierski had six stops, all coming in the second half.

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