Skage Simonsen set up Tani Oluwaseyi’s game-winner in extratime. (Photo courtesy of the St. John’s SID)
RALEIGH, N.C. – Following a night chock-full of narrow misses, Tani Oluwaseyi finally broke through in the 107th minute Sunday, finding the back of the net with a golden goal and leading the St. John’s University men past North Carolina State, 1-0, at Dail Soccer Field.
“It was an unbelievable team effort,” said head coach Dr. Dave Masur, who secured his 410th collegiate coaching victory. “I was happy to see the team really stuck to the game plan and did what we needed to do to get a result. I think we played for each other and took a big step forward as a team.”
St. John’s improved to 2-0-0 for the first time since 2008, a year in which the Red Storm also made its fourth appearance in the College Cup. The Johnnies’ win over the Wolfpack, which received votes in the preseason United Soccer Coaches poll, also marked the program’s first victory over an Atlantic Coast Conference foe since 2010.
Despite entering the game at halftime, Oluwaseyi had already registered two of the Red Storm’s best chances of the night before tallying the game winner. The sophomore took the game’s first shot on goal of the in the 48th minute before sending a ball just inches over the cross bar in the 83rd minute. A few minutes prior to ending the contest, Oluwaseyi drew a foul on NC State keeper Vinnie Durand in the box, but Durand came away with a save on the ensuing penalty kick by Matt Forster.
Oluwaseyi’s game-winner was set up by his teammates’ efforts on a pair of 50-50 balls in the offensive zone, as Brandon Duarte headed a ball toward Skage Simonsen, who then headed it to Oluwaseyi.
Goalkeepers and Jan Hoffelner combined to record the Red Storm’s second shutout.
Masur also praised the efforts of the Red Storm’s two sophomore center backs, Matt Chandler and Luke Hansen, who helped limit the Wolfpack to seven shots.
The Johnnies host Manhattan College for their home opener at Belson Stadium Friday at 7:30 p.m.