Men's Soccer Wins Third Straight

September 16, 2012

Senior Alvand Hajizadeh scored the only goal of the game with a minute remaining in the first half Sunday afternoon as Middlebury earned a 1-0 victory over Plymouth State University in a non-conference men’s soccer match at Panther Field. The Panthers improve to 3-1 on the season with three straight wins.

Hajizadeh scored on a beautiful header to the left side of the goal, fed to him on a diagonal free kick from sophomore Brandon Robinson.  The Middlebury defense, led by juniors Graham Knisley and William Gevertz, limited the home team to just four shots and senior goalkeeper Zach Abdu-Glass made two saves to complete the clean sheet. 

Middlebury had an 11-3 margin in shots in the first half but didn’t score until the final minute. Senior Josh Lyvers had the first good scoring attempt nine minutes in after a header pass from classmate Jack Freeman but his shot went wide right.  A header by senior Matt Martin 10 minutes later also sailed right, and a cross from Hajizadeh to sophomore Harper Williams was broken up on a nice play by PSU senior Parker Spear.

Hajizadeh’s goal with 1:19 remaining in the first half gave the visitors momentum heading into the second half, but the home team went back and forth with them.  Junior Jacob Sjoberg had perhaps PSU’s best chance with in the 65th minute but his shot just inside the top of the box was tipped over the crossbar by Abdu-Glass. Middlebury was looking for an insurance goal but junior Tyler Smith missed high with a shot with 18 minutes remaining and PSU freshman keeper Sam Whipple (3 saves), making his first career start, stopped Hajizadeh from point blank range with six minutes to play.

Middlebury finished with a 17-4 advantage in shots and an 11-2 margin in corner kicks.