Leopards Edged in Home Opener

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(3-0-0)
 
  1 2 F
Cornell 1 0 1
Lafayette 0 0 0
 
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(1-3-0)
 
 
 
 Scoring Summary
 Player  Assist Time
 Cornell - Goepel unassisted 40:08
 
 Goalkeepers
 Player Mins GA S
 Cornell - Pflasterer 90:00 0 2
 LC - Leavy 90:00 1 3

EASTON, Pa. - The Lafayette men's soccer team opened the home portion of its 2012 season with a hard-fought 1-0 loss to Cornell on Friday night at Oaks Stadium.

A 57-minute lightning delay halted play at the 20:36 mark of the opening half. Prior to the stoppage, Cornell had the better of the play for the first 10 minutes, but the Lafayette defense kept the Big Red off the scoreboard with solid defense in front of goalkeeper Alexander Leavy, who made his first career start for the Maroon and White.

With nearly 10 minutes remaining in the half, Cornell survived a pair of Lafayette free kicks just outside the penalty area, keeping the score level to that point. On the other end, the visitors put away the game's only score when sophomore Conor Goepel took advantage of an opening on the pitch. A Lafayette defender fell on the near sideline and play continued when Goepel ripped a bending ball into the far-side netting past the outstretched arms of Leavy.

Each team had its opportunities in the second half to convert chances into goals, but neither side was successful. In the 56th minute, senior Kyle Scharfenberg fired a shot from the center of the field that gave Cornell goalkeeper Rick Pflasterer all he could handle as he kept the ball from crossing the line after he  was unable to hold on to strike.

Cornell's Daniel Haber took a pass at the top of the penalty area at 66:47, but he slid a shot just to the left of the post as Leavy came out to cut down the angle. 

Lafayette's best chance of the night came in the 84th minute, when Sean Peckham had a look near the penalty spot, but fired a shot off the post. He then ran onto the rebound and was taken down from behind by a Cornell defender. The ball skidded over the endline and the Big Red held on for the 1-0 victory. 

Cornell held the statistical advantage in shots (12-6) and corners (7-5) and the teams combined for 19 fouls in the match. Haber was shown a yellow card for Cornell, while Blake Fink, Alec Golini, Brandon Turner and Chandler Fraser-Pauls each were booked for the Leopards. 

Lafayette returns to action on Sunday when it travels to Philadelphia to play La Salle at 1 p.m.

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