With the win, RU improved its Yurcak record to 5-0-1 vs. Seton Hall and 19-7-1 under head coach Bob Reasso. Continuing a trend of tight contests, tonight’s match was the fifth in a row (and 8th out of the last 9) to be decided by one goal.
Despite out-shooting the Pirates, 7-4, in the opening half, Rutgers was unable to break through in the first 45 minutes of play. After the intermission, play opened up, as RU’s Chris Karcz (Clifton, NJ) and SHU’s Vincent Scerbo exchanged failed scoring opportunities in the opening minutes of play.
The decisive play of the match, however, began when sophomore Wes Kirk (Bloomfield, NJ) intercepted a throw-in along the near sideline and sent a long cross into the box. SHU goalkeeper Boris Pardo fumbled the ball, which Loverso corralled in front of an empty net as Pardo scrambled to get back into position. Without hesitation, Loverso chipped the ball into the back of the net from two yards out.
Just over two minutes later, the momentum shifted back to the Pirates from a personnel standpoint, as Boutilier received his first career red card following a tackle at midfield. Playing with just 10 players for the remainder of the match, senior goalkeeper Ricky Zinter (Penfield, NY), who turned away four shots down the stretch, and back Guy Abrahamson (Livingston, NJ) led a strong defensive effort to preserve the win.
The two teams were even in shots with 16 apiece, while RU held a slight edge in corner kicks, 5-4. Zinter stopped seven shots to establish a season high, while Pardo stopped four. Zinter now owns three shutouts in four matches this season and lowered his GAA to 0.71 (0.00 in BE play).
Rutgers will return to action, without Boutilier, on Saturday, when it continues its BIG EAST slate at Georgetown’s Harbin Field. Time of the match is 1:00 p.m. BOX SCORE