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Connor Willings
Connor Willings
Courtesy: Marc Hagemeier
Bucknell Menís Soccer Falls to Army 2-0
Release:   09/28/2013

LEWISBURG, Pa. – Army scored late in the first half and early in the second, then turned the game over to its stingy defense and held off Bucknell 2-0 on Saturday before a Family Weekend crowd of 1,025 at Emmitt Field at Holmes Stadium. In the Patriot League opener for both teams, the Bison saw their five-game winning streak end, while the Black Knights improved to 6-1-1 on the season.

Bucknell had outscored foes 8-1 during that five-match run. The Bison had posted three straight shutouts, and goalkeeper Mike Lansing was on a personal four-game shutout string, the longest by a Bucknell keeper in 30 years. But the Black Knights put a halt to that streak when defender Cameron Niccum came forward on a corner kick and headed in Justin Kim’s service with 9:36 left in the first half.

The Bison responded the goal with one of their best stretches of the day over the final nine minutes of the half. They nearly scored with 6:30 left in the half, but Army keeper Winston Boldt robbed Jonathan Grad, and then Mark Leibensperger’s follow attempt was blocked.

Bucknell hoped to carry that momentum into the second half, but Army turned the tables just 53 seconds after the resumption of play. Lansing came off his line to punch away a ball but got stuck out of position in the scramble, and Christian Ollen put a shot into the upper left corner of the net for a 2-0 lead.

Lansing kept it a 2-0 game when he stopped Nick Williams on a breakaway later in the half. The Bison had a couple of good looks as well. Grad headed a corner kick toward the far post, but Army defender Tommy Jaeger headed the ball out of harm’s way. With about 16 minutes to play, Mayowa Alli got a head on Connor Willings long throw-in, but the shot just skipped wide.

“Hopefully we will learn from our mistakes, and understand the intensity that is required to compete in Patriot League games,” said head coach Brendan Nash. “Army did exactly what they needed to do to win the game, and we were not as sharp as we needed to be.”

Bucknell finished with a 15-12 shot advantage, but Boldt countered with five saves en route to his seventh shutout of the season. Army has allowed a goal in only one of its eight games this year.

Lansing had seven saves for the Bison, but saw his career-best scoreless minutes streak come to an end at 428:29. Forward Jesse Klug also saw a streak stopped, as he had scored a goal in four straight games entering the day. Klug did lead all players with four shot attempts.

Bucknell returns to Patriot League play at Lehigh next Saturday.

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