Men's College Soccer
Saint Francis College 3, Rider University 1
LAWRENCEVILLE-The Broncs fell to Saint Francis of New York Monday afternoon. "We're disappointed with the outcome," said Rider head coach Charlie Inverso, "but I'm proud of our guys. I saw some real progress today."
Trailing 1-0, Rider (0-5) tied the score with just under 20 minutes remaining on the first collegiate goal by freshman Robert Kroschwitz (Pipersville, PA/Palisades) on an assist by freshman Tyler Morris (Montclair, NJ/Montclair).
"We've known Bobby for a few years," Inverso said. "He's a guy who was a little under the radar but we knew he could score goals."
"To be honest I was trying to cross the ball," said Kroschwitz, who is the nephew of former Rider pitching great Ron Kroschwitz '87. "I guess I made a good mistake."
In 1987 Ron Kroschwitz defeated Georgia Tech in an NCAA Regional game, helping Rider reach the final 16 in the national tournament, one win away from the College World Series.
"He told me they had a pretty good team his senior year," the younger Kroschwitz said. "That didn't have too much to do with me coming here, though. I really liked Coach Inverso. That was the determining factor in me choosing Rider. It is neat though that my uncle played here."
In all, nine freshmen played for Rider Monday, including six who started. "That's a good sign for the future," Inverso said, "but I'm concerned with the present right now. Those freshmen have earned their playing time."
St. Francis-NY (3-4), who took fourth ranked UConn to the brink in a 1-0 loss on a penalty kick earlier this season, took a 2-1 lead six minutes later and scored the insurance goal with 5:07 left to play. "They might be the best team in the country that nobody knows about," Inverso said of the Terriers.
The Terriers out-shot Rider 25-11, including 8-4 shots on goal. Saint Francis had six corner kicks to Rider's two.
Rider and St. Francis have now met 13 times in the series that began in 1987, with the Terriers now holding a slight 7-6 advantage. The Terriers won 1-0 in Brooklyn last year and St. Francis won 3-0 two years ago in Lawrenceville. The last time Rider defeated St. Francis was 2002.
"Last year it was only 1-0 but we had to sit in defensively the entire game," Inverso said. "Today I thought we out-played them between the 18s."
Rider senior goalkeeper Jason Giordano (Massapequa Park, N.Y./Massapequa) made five saves.
Rider travels across town to Princeton this weekend to play the host Tigers Friday night and the University of Pennsylvania Sunday afternoon in the Princeton Invitational.
"When we were asked to be a part of the tournament I thought we'd be crazy not to," Inverso said. "These are teams who traditionally go to the NCAA tournament and that is who we want to be playing against."