QUEENS, N.Y. – The St. John’s University men completed an undefeated exhibition season with a 5-2 win over LIU Brooklyn on a rainy Saturday night at Belson Stadium.
Five players scored for St. John’s, which has not scored five goals in a regular season match since November 2013.
Matt Forster, Mauricio Rivas, Josiah Crawford, Tanitoluwa Oluwaseyi and Brandon Duarte wrote their names on the scoresheet, while Niko Petridis registered two assists. Forster and Oluwaseyi also added one assist apiece.
The Red Storm wasted no time getting on the board, as Forster was dragged down in the box 90 seconds into the match. The junior midfielder buried the penalty kick for a 1-0 lead.
Less than four minutes later, Forster began another scoring sequence, sending a cross into the box that was knocked away by the Blackbird keeper directly in front to an open Rivas. The senior pushed it into the empty net, scoring his second goal of the preseason and putting the Johnnies ahead, 2-0.
LIU Brooklyn cut into the lead with a penalty kick of its own about nine minutes later for a 2-1 score.
After 15 scoreless minutes to start the second half, the freshman connection of Oluwaseyi and Crawford linked up for the second time in as many games this preseason. After scoring against New Hampshire oMonday, it was Oluwaseyi’s turn to set things up, making a crafty move down the left side of the box to evade his defender and create space. The Mississauga, Ontario product placed a pass in front to a waiting Crawford, who buried for a 3-1 advantage.
LIU Brooklyn would not go down quietly, scoring in the 82nd minute to make it a one-goal game once again.
Less than three minutes later, the Johnnies extended their advantage back to two. After being awarded a free kick just beyond the top left corner of the 18-yard box, Petridis kept a ball on the ground for a streaking Oluwaseyi, who flicked it past the keeper and into the back of the net.
Only a minute later, Petridis carried the ball into the box and sending a shot on target. The keeper saved the attempt, but was unable to control the rebound, allowing Duarte to pound it home and give St. John’s its fifth goal.
The Red Storm will begin the fall season, its 28th under the direction of head coach Dr. Dave Masur as the Johnnies travel to California for a contest with UC Santa Barbara Friday at 10:30 p.m. ET.