Men’s and Women’s Soccer Fall to Elon

The Monmouth University men’s and women’s soccer teams were defeated in two hard-fought contests against CAA opponent Elon University on Saturday, Sept. 24 and Sunday, Sept. 25 respectively.

In the first of the two matches, the men’s soccer team (3-4-0, 0-4-0 CAA) was defeated 2-1 by the visiting Phoenix (6-2-0, 3-1-0 CAA) in a close battle until the final minute. Although Elon controlled the game for much of the first half, the first true scoring opportunity for Monmouth came in the 17th minute from forward Ben Zakowski, whose shot was ultimately saved by Elon goalie Ryan Bilichuk. However, the Phoenix answered with goals in the 19th and 40th minutes by Mason Duval and Vemund Hole Vik respectively, gaining the advantage entering the second half.

In the second, Monmouth fought back to generate more chances and ultimately bring the score to the final 2-1 outcome in the first matchup between the two teams. In the 81st minute, assists from Gabriel Miranda and Luke McBeth allowed for midfielder Chris Morandi to get the Hawks on the board and secure his first career goal. Although Morandi’s goal would be the only put up by Monmouth, the Hawks still showed tremendous efforts throughout all 90 minutes of play.

The two teams were even at 11 shots, with Elon having a slight edge over Monmouth with five shots on goal to the Hawks’ four. Monmouth’s 11 shots were also the product of seven different contributing Hawks. The teams were also even at three saves each, bringing goalie Eyrk Dymora’s season total to 23.

In the second of the two games on Sunday against the Phoenix (6-2-2, 2-0-0 CAA), the women’s soccer team (8-2-0, 1-1-0 CAA) lost in a likewise tight battle ending in a 1-0 final score.

In the other first-time meeting of the weekend between Monmouth and Elon, the Hawks outshot the Phoenix 5-2, also earning more corners with four to Elon’s zero. However, a goal by Elon forward Isa Murdock in the 53rd minute gave the Phoenix the advantage, which would ultimately become the only shot on goal of the match.

Despite the final score, the Hawks held strong throughout the entire 90 minutes of play. Accumulating eight fouls for Elon’s 13, the Hawks fought through a physical match to put up an impressive performance against their second CAA opponent of the season. Monmouth also displayed its offensive versatility, with four different Hawks earning a shot throughout the match. The match also saw a new face for Monmouth, with midfielder Julia Evernham making her first career start on Sunday.

Following the loss, Head Coach Kylee Flynn attested to her team’s efforts. “There is so much to be proud of today even though we did not get the result we hoped for. This team fought hard until the last second-unfortunately, it just wasn’t our day. I am very pleased with how we represented Monmouth in our first weekend in the CAA. Looking forward to a stretch of home games,” she said.

The women’s soccer team begins their series of home games on Thursday, Sept. 29 at 6 p.m. for their third CAA matchup against Hofstra. The men’s soccer team will visit Saint Joseph’s for a non-conference game on Tuesday, Sept. 27 at 7 p.m.