Sophomore forward Adam Branco recorded a goal and an assist in Stonehill's 3-2 win over Saint Michael's this afternoon.
Skyhawks advance to Saturday's championship match on Brehm's 80th minute header
WORCESTER, Mass. (September 4, 2015) – The Stonehill College men's soccer team let a 2-0 lead slip away late in the second half, but an 80th minute goal by freshman midfielder Justin Brehm (Latham, New York/Shaker) sent the Skyhawks past Saint Michael's College, 3-2, this afternoon in the first round of the Catholic Cup at Assumption College's Multi-Sport Stadium.
Stonehill, which led by two goals with under 20 minutes remaining in the contest, suddenly found itself in a 2-2 game following a pair of Saint Michael's strikes just 16 seconds apart in the 71st and 72nd minutes.
Freshman forward Cris Cervantes (Barranquilla, Colombia/Doral Academy Charter School) got the Purple Knights on the board at the 70:49 mark with a chip shot over the head of Stonehill senior goalkeeper Luke Besse (Hamilton, Massachusetts/Hamilton-Wenham Regional), and junior forward Aaron DaCosta (Newark, Delaware/Archmere Academy) capitalized on a Skyhawk turnover seconds later to pull Saint Michael's level.
With the game still tied 2-2 in the 80th minute, Brehm was on the receiving end of a cross from sophomore midfielder Connor O'Brien (Schenectady, New York/Guilderland Central), which he headed into the net for his first collegiate goal.
Stonehill was on the attack early in the contest, as senior forward Drew Montano (Avon, Connecticut/Avon) forced Saint Michael's junior goalkeeper Matthew McBride (Colchester, Vermont/Colchester) to make a save at the 2:44 mark before scoring the game's opening goal 57 seconds later.
Sophomore forward Adam Branco (Naugatuck, Connecticut/Naugatuck), who assisted on Montano's tally, found the back of the net himself on a header in the 35th minute with the help of a cross from O'Brien to give the Skyhawks a 2-0 lead.
Besse and McBride recorded three saves each, while the Purple Knights held the advantage in both corner kicks (12-0) and shots (12-11) this afternoon.
With the win, Stonehill (1-0, 0-0 NE-10) advances to the Catholic Cup championship match for the second consecutive season. The Skyhawks will take on the winner of the Assumption College/Saint Anselm College contest at 4 p.m., while Saint Michael's (0-1, 0-0 NE-10) plays the loser in the consolation game at 1 p.m.