Fast Start Propels Men's Soccer Past No. 22 Creighton, 3-2
Samuel Geiler scores two goals in crucial victory.
Oct. 26, 2013
SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. - Freshman midfielder Samuel Geiler (Offenburg, Germany) scored twice to lift the Seton Hall University men's soccer team to an upset victory over No. 22 Creighton University, 3-2, on Saturday afternoon at Owen T. Carroll Field.
With three regular season matches remaining in BIG EAST play Seton Hall faced a near must-win situation in order to keep pace with Creighton and Butler University for the final two spots in the BIG EAST Tournament. The Pirates earned the three points they needed and are now just a point behind Creighton for fifth-place in the league and tied with Butler for sixth, although the Bulldogs, who host St. John's on Saturday night, have the head-to-head victory over SHU.
The upset win was the first over a ranked opponent for Seton Hall this season in three attempts this year, and the Pirates' first victory over a top-25 foe since a 1-0 win over then No. 14 Monmouth last season at Owen T. Carroll Field. Seton Hall now has at least one win against a Top-25 team in each of the last three seasons.
The pair of scores for Geiler continues his excellent freshman season which has seen the talented outside midfielder score a team-high eight goals while compiling 20 points. His first score on Saturday came in the sixth minute and was actually a game-tying effort, as Creighton's leading scorer Timo Pitter tapped in a goal in the third minute to give the Jays a 1-0 lead.
Senior Max Garcia (Jersey City, N.J.) set up both of Geiler's goals, although the second was somewhat indirectly. On the first score Garcia played a pass in from the right side to Geiler at the top of the area, and he hit a left-footed shot to beat Alex Bolowich to the right post.
Seton Hall took its first lead of the game in the 19th minute and it was junior midfielder Kai Greene (South Orange, N.J.) that finished a loose ball in the area. Junior back Mateusz Brela (Kielce, Poland) had the initial shot on the sequence, slamming an attempt off the cross bar from six yards out. Greene won the rebound from a defender and quickly sent a shot on net before Bolowich could scramble back into position.
The Pirates' offensive onslaught continued in the 33rd minute. Garcia was taken down from behind in the area by Brendan Hines-Ike, resulting in the third penalty kick attempt of the season for SHU. It was Geiler that attempted the PK, the first penalty kick of his career, and he placed a low shot on frame toward the right side to beat Bolowich.
Geiler's eight goals this season are the most for a Seton Hall player since Andrew Welker netted eight scores during the 2009 season and his 20 points are the highest single-season tally for a Pirate since Samuel Petrone's 21-point 2008 campaign. Garcia's four assists this year represent a new career high.
With a comfortable lead the Pirates made a mistake just over a minute later that could have swayed the momentum in the other direction as an own goal allowed the Jays to climb back into the match and trail only by one at the half. Chasing down a long ball towards his own net, sophomore Julian Kennedy (Nindorf, Germany) headed a pass back to goalkeeper Julian Spindler (Weiersbach, Germany), only Spindler had already moved forward to make a play, and the result was a miscommunication leading to a score.
The first half featured five goals and a combined 16 shot attempts for the two teams, but the second period did not see nearly the same volume of quality offensive looks. Creighton's best chance at tying the match came very late in the game when in the 88th minute Ricardo Perez appeared to goal with a header toward the near post off a cross from the right side, but his attempt hit the post and Spindler grabbed the rebound to prevent a second attack.
Seton Hall returns to action on Saturday, Nov. 2, when it travels to Milwaukee, Wis., to face the first place first place Marquette Golden Eagles at 7:05 p.m. (ET).