QUEENS, N.Y. – After taking down longtime rival University of Connecticut in their Big East home opener Wednesday, the St. John’s University men returns to action at Belson Stadium, welcoming Villanova University to Queens for a Saturday 5 p.m. contest.
St. John’s (3-1-0, 1-1-0) will look to pick up three crucial points in conference play for the second straight outing. The Red Storm took down the Huskies despite being without several key contributors due to COVID-19 contact tracing protocols.
For the third time in as many victories this season, Tani Oluwaseyi provided the winner Wednesday evening. The reigning Big East offensive player of the year and a member of the preseason watch list for the MAC Hermann Trophy, Oluwaseyi headed home his fourth goal of the year in the 20th minute off an assist from Anthony Herbert. Herbert also provided the primary assist on Jared Juleau’s second-half insurance goal. Einar Lye also picked up an assist on Juleau’s first goal of the season.
St. John’s will look to remain unbeaten on the season at home, where the Johnnies are 3-0-0 and outscoring the opposition by a combined 7-2. Since the stadium opened in 2002, the Red Storm is 116-38-32 at home.
Villanova comes to Queens with a record of 0-4, including an 0-2 mark in Big East play following losses to Georgetown and Providence. Their most recent falter to the Friars came in double overtime after the Wildcats outshot Providence by a margin of 14-10 in the first 100 minutes. St. John’s will mark Villanova’s third straight opponent to open BIG EAST play that reached the NCAA Division I Tournament Round of 16 in 2019.
The Wildcats have been shut out in three straight games and have not scored since a 2-1 loss against Drexel to open the season. Freshman midfielder Branden Johns is the lone Villanova player to find the back of the net this year.
St. John’s is 24-9-6 all-time against Villanova in a series that dates back to 1984. After dropping four consecutive games to the Wildcats from 2013-16, St. John’s is unbeaten in its last three, including a 4-0 win last season at Belson.