NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – The No. 12 Salisbury University men's soccer team earned its ninth win in a row with a 3-1 thrashing of new conference member Christopher Newport University on Wednesday night.
The Sea Gulls (14-2, 6-0 CAC) sealed a first-round bye in the Capital Athletic Conference tournament with the victory, remaining the only undefeated team with two matches left in the regular season.
Taking the pitch for a night contest at Captains' Field, SU found the back of the net three times against CNU (10-5-1, 4-2 CAC). Seniors Larry Cornish and Elliott Crompton and junior Benjamin Aryeetey, all scored in the contest.
The shootout showed no results until late in the first half when Cornish connected on a shot in the 39th minute. Junior Matt Greene recorded the assist after stealing the ball at the top of the 18-yard box, leaving Cornish room to take a rip from the left side. The Salisbury, Md., native kept it low and found room past Captains' goalkeeper Sean Killion to put Salisbury on the board. The goal is Cornish's second of the season.
With under a minute left in the first, Greene hooked up with Aryeetey to give the Gulls a 2-0 lead at the half. On a corner awarded to SU, Greene found Aryeetey on the backside post to connect for a header finish. The goal is the Ghana native's third of the season. Greene finished with a career-high two assists for the match, totaling a team-leading five for the season.
Christopher Newport came out firing early in the second half, finding the back of the net for the first time in the match just nine minutes in. Jimmy Grace received a pass from teammate Caleb Lewis, hitting a shot from 20 yards out, pulling Salisbury back to a one-goal lead.
Seven minutes later, Salisbury added goal number three to steal the momentum and eventually seal the victory. Freshman midfielder Billy Fowler crossed a ball into the middle of the 18-yard box, finding Crompton. With a one-touch move past a defender, the senior midfielder blasted home his fourth goal of the season, second in two games.
Through 90 minutes of play, sophomore goalkeeper Drew Staedeli recorded six saves and his 14th win. Junior captain Kyle Westbrook and the defense held strong against a CNU offense that has totaled 292 shots for the season, only allowing 17 attempts, seven on goal.
The men take the pitch again on Sunday, Oct. 27, as they travel to St. Mary's City, Md., for another conference contest. The Gulls meet up with the St. Mary's College of Maryland at 1:30 p.m., from Seahawk Stadium.