Akron streak halted, offenses explode in week 6
A streak seven years and 49 games in the making came to a screeching halt on Saturday night as Hartwick upended Akron 2-0 behind a career night by goalkeeper Mateo Munarriz, who managed to overshadow the achievements of some offensive juggernauts in week six of the college soccer season.
Munarriz, a junior from Colombia, made 13 saves in the game to help secure the 2-0 victory for the Hawks and end the Zips’ 49-game unbeaten streak in MAC conference play. The win wasn’t just a long time coming for a conference opponent; it was the first win for Hartwick over the eight-time defending conference champs since 1973 and also snapped a 33-0 mark the Zips have accumulated against conference opponents since 2008.
While the MAC conference isn’t quite at the level of the ACC, Pac-12 or even Conference USA, Akron’s streak was still an impressive one that speaks to the dominance the program has had in recent years and Hartwick deserves credit for an impressive result on a historic night for their program. All streaks come to an end but Hartwick ending it on the road in Akron is one of the more improbable results so far this season.
UMBC also saw their impressive streak to start the season with an overtime loss to Delaware on Tuesday night. While the game between two of the nation’s highest scoring offenses and most potent goalscorers (Pete Caringi III and Guillermo Delgado), a single own goal was not only the difference in the game, but the only goal scored in more than 100 minutes of play.
Dayton fared much better in overtime, upending Incarnate Word after trailing to maintain the only perfect record remaining in Division 1 this season. Their record now sits at 10-0 entering Atlantic 10 play, which despite the unimpressive records of their opponents, is still a worthy feat for a team that was well off the national radar entering the season.
The list of remaining unbeatens has shrunk to only four others as College of Charleston beat Winthrop and UAB gave Florida Atlantic their first loss with a 6-2 defeat that was one of a host of lopsided scorelines in week 6. Offensive outbursts included Georgetown dropping 8 goals on Seton Hall in a 8-0 demolition, Syracuse upending NC State 5-0, Virginia besting Pitt 5-0, Cal Poly beating UC Riverside 5-1 and Denver 5-0 over IPFW.
California and Washington remained unbeaten and held their spots at the top of the national rankings with wins in their Pac-12 openers and a 1-1 draw against each other in a Sunday afternoon game. Notre Dame beat Clemson and Indiana to stay unbeaten at 6-0-3 and Milwaukee continued their impressive run tacking two more wins to stretch their record to 9-0-1. After flying high for weeks, Northwestern was brought back down to earth with dramatic overtime losses to Bradley and Michigan State, which now finds itself at 7-1-1.
Louisville picked up a pair of shutouts to extend their string of shutouts to five and their consecutive minutes without a goal to 518. Defensively right now though, not even Georgetown’s impressive five goals conceded can touch Gonzaga, which has only allowed four goals all season.
Individual accolades not going the way of Munarriz have zeroed in on Notre Dame senior Harrison Shipp, who continues to make waves in the Hermann Trophy Watch turning in strong performances for the Irish. Shipp scored two unassisted goals to beat Clemson and assisted on both goals in the 2-0 win over in-state rival Indiana. He has five goals and five assists on the year, one shy of tying career bests in both categories.
Fellow senior Steve Neumann was a big reason why Georgetown had so many goals on Sunday; the New Hope, Pa., native registered his second career hat trick to double his goal total for the season and added his third assist of the season setting up the first career goal for freshman Brett Campbell. Syracuse freshman Emil Ekblom, a player I’ve started referring to as the Norwegian Brek Shea, had his first hat trick in the 5-0 win over Pitt, three nights after freshman teammate Alex Halis scored his third game-winning goal and fifth of the season to beat Binghamton in overtime.
Bradley freshman Christian Okeke picked a great time to net his first career goal, giving the Braves a 1-0 lead against Northwestern that he followed up with a winner in overtime. Northwestern’s Joey Calistri had a trying week in terms of team results but the sophomore forward found the back of the net for the ninth and 10th time against Bradley to put him level with Caringi III and High Point’s Mamadee Nyepon at the top of the national scoring charts.
Of all the goals scored, none were as pretty to watch as the winner Michigan sophomore forward James Murphy scored against Ohio State. The video of the Oxford, England, native’s goal has, at last count, 31,000 views.
Looking ahead to week 7, tonight sees the matchup of Maryland vs Notre Dame (ACC Digital Network) and North Carolina tries to score a goal and end their string of five straight conference draws against Clemson tonight (ESPN3). Some other games of note coming up include New Mexico visiting Tulsa Wednesday night (NSCAATV), Stanford and UCLA doing battle Thursday night (Pac-12 Network) and California playing UCLA (Pac-12 Network) and Cal Poly taking on Northridge Sunday.