HAMDEN, Conn. – The Quinnipiac University men's soccer team returned to its winning ways on Wednesday afternoon as the Bobcats handed Fairfield University a 2-0 loss at the QU Soccer Field on Mount Carmel Campus. Seniors Brandon Strain-Goode (Toronto, Ontario) and Simon Hinde (Canberra, Australia) each scored in the victory - lifting Quinnipiac to 5-1-1 in conference play and in sole possession of second place in the standings.
Standing just 30 miles apart, Wednesday's matinee was the first meeting ever between the two programs. Quinnipiac improved to 7-4-4 overall, and for the time being, has a two-point cushion for the second slot on the table. The Bobcats are 6-1-1 over their last eight games and have won five out of their last six matches.
After a stagnant start offensively from both sides, it was the hosting Bobcats who opened the scoring summary in the 23rd minute of play. Strain-Goode scored his first career goal when he was on the receiving end of a perfect through-ball from Tobi Esche (Bremen, Germany). Strain-Goode needed just one touch on the bouncing ball and lofted a shot over the head of Fairfield's goalkeeper, Joe Martin, for the 1-0 lead. The first goal was vital for Quinnipiac, who improved to 15-2-2 since last season when scoring the game's first marker.
After the break, Fairfield put Quinnipiac on its heels for a good portion of the stanza. However, junior goalkeeper Borja Angoitia (Bilbao, Spain) and the MAAC's leading defense were up for the challenge. Angoitia, who had been sidelined with an injury for the last two weeks, returned in dramatic fashion with three saves and his 13th career shutout. He is second all-time at Quinnipiac in career shutouts (13), goals against average (1.20), and tied for second in wins (21).
In the 82nd minute, Quinnipiac manufactured a beautiful goal to put the game out of reach. Esche started the play by whipping a cross into the back post from the left side of the field. Sam Nicol (Edinburgh, Scotland) headed the ball back to Hinde who laced a half-volley into the side-netting of the far post for a 2-0 lead. Hinde, who was recently featured on TopDrawerSoccer.com for his goal against Canisius, picked up his team-leading eighth goal of the season on the play.
With the result, Fairfield fell to 6-5-3 overall and 3-3-2 in league play. The Stags will take a week off before hosting Saint Peter's on Wednesday, Nov. 6 at Lessing Field.
Quinnipiac is back in action on Saturday, Nov. 2 with Senior Day from the QU Soccer Field. Prior to kickoff, the Bobcats will honor five senior class members for their hard work and dedication to the program. QU hosts Saint Peter's at 2 p.m.
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