St. John's & Hoyas to battle for first in Big East
Oct 23, 2019 | 926 views | 0 0 comments | 118 118 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The seventh-ranked St. John’s men’s soccer team kept its best start in decades rolling on Saturday night, topping Creighton, 2-0, in front of more than 2,000 hostile fans at Morrison Stadium.

The Red Storm (12-1-0, 5-0-0 Big East) maintained its position atop the league standings, staying two points clear of thirteenth-ranked Georgetown (11-1-1, 4-0-1) in second place.

The Johnnies and the Hoyas will square off on Wednesday night at Belson Stadium on the Big East Digital Network.

St. John’s recorded its fifth consecutive clean sheet and its ninth overall this season. The shutout streak is the program’s longest since the Big East Championship season of 2011, when the Johnnies rattled off six straight clean sheets in September.

Jan Hoffelner made two saves to register his sixth win of the year, while Luka Gavran tallied one save in the second half to preserve the lead. Eight of the team’s nine shutouts have been joint efforts by the Red Storm’s goalkeeping tandem.

Tani Oluwaseyi scored his eighth goal of the season, including his fifth game-winner, in the first half to give the Johnnies an early advantage that they would not relinquish.

The sophomore, who leads the Big East in both goals and points, is now the first St. John’s player to score eight times in a season since Nelson Becerra accomplished the feat during the College Cup campaign of 2008.

Freshman Atila Ashrafi netted his second goal of the campaign in the 74th minute of action, quelling a late Creighton push and sealing the St. John’s victory.

The Johnnies last won 12 of their first 13 games in 1993, when the team claimed victories in 13 of its opening 14 decisions in the midst of a 21-game unbeaten streak that lasted the entire regular season.

In five Big East games this season, St. John’s has now outscored the opposition by a 14-1 margin. All 14 of those goals have been unanswered since the Red Storm behind 1-0 to Xavier in its league opener on September 20.

The win was the first for St. John’s in four opportunities all-time at Morrison Stadium, a venue at which the Bluejays have a winning percentage of better than .800 dating back to its opening in 2003.

Wednesday’s match against the Hoyas, who defeated Maryland and Xavier this past week, will decide first place in the league standings with just a few conference games remaining.

The game has the potential to be the first all-top 10 regular season match at Belson Stadium since September 26, 2008, when the fourth-ranked Red Storm defeated fifth-ranked Connecticut, 3-1.

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