Mental mistakes mar road trip for men’s soccer

Rough weekend sends Bengals to 0-2 start in SUNYAC play

Dylan Ross is tied for the team lead with four assists this season for Buffalo State.

Dave DeLuca/The Record

Dylan Ross is tied for the team lead with four assists this season for Buffalo State.

The Buffalo State men’s soccer team came home empty-handed after losing two tough road games over the weekend to open up conference play.

The first game was against Geneseo, a team that seemed to match up well with the Bengals, and the other was against Brockport, the No. 7-ranked team in the nation. The Bengals came up just short in a 3-2 overtime loss to Geneseo, and that was followed by a 2-0 defeat against Brockport.

“It comes down to attitude,” senior defender Anthony Appiani said. “Everyone needs to be focused and we need to get the first tackle in hard.”

Freshman goalkeeper Robby Kuhnle had to be spectacular right from the start for Buffalo State on Friday. The team came out flat-footed against Geneseo, as they were outshot, 11-0, to start the game.

Geneseo opened the scoring in the 10th minute after Buffalo State’s sloppy play caused an own goal.

The Knights dominated the first half, keeping the Bengals on their heels. Shots came from all angles, and the Knights converted on one of their chances in the 35th minute. Forward Mat Rough scored his first goal of the season off an assist from Pat Lynch to make the score 2-0.

Buffalo State did a better job getting shots on Geneseo goalkeeper Logan Calvey at the start of the second half

After forward Dylan Ross was stopped by Calvey, forward Erik Tellgren hit the crossbar. Then, Buffalo State was rewarded with a goal from midfielder C.J. Scirto in the 60th minute. The goal was his third of the year and cut the deficit to one.

As the game carried on the Bengals had many chances. They finally converted one when Appiani scored the game-tying goal off a Scirto corner kick in the 82nd minute. The goal was Appiani’s second of the year.

The contest went into overtime and lasted about four more minutes. Geneseo’s Matt D’Amico put in his first goal of the year to end the game and send the Bengals to Brockport on a low note.

Saturday’s game against Brockport provided the Bengals with their toughest test of the season.

The Golden Eagles are undefeated on the year, and senior forward Andrew Dugan said the Bengals were eager to hand them their first loss.

“We knew that we were in for a tough game at and we knew it was going to be a physical one,” Dugan said. “When we come out of the gates flying you can see we were able to hang with the seventh-best team in Division III right now.”

In the 27th minute, Brockport’s Ryan Phillips corralled a long throw in and scored the first goal of the game and the only goal of the first half.

Buffalo State allowed its second own goal of the weekend after a Bengal defender tried to clear a Brockport corner kick. The game ended in a 2-0 Bengals’ loss, sending them home 0-2 in SUNYAC play.

The Bengals matched the Golden Eagles with 12 shots and four corner kicks each, but they were unable to get the offense going.

Head coach Mark Howlett said his squad fought hard against the two SUNYAC schools, but added that nobody likes to lose.

“All in all it’s a dramatic change around. We know we can compete with the best,” Howlett said. “If we can convert on those chances, we can come out of this weekend 2-0 instead of 0-2.”