Syracuse fails to capitalize on 11 corner kicks in loss to Niagara

first_img Published on August 31, 2012 at 11:47 pm Contact Trevor: [email protected] | @TrevorHass Facebook Twitter Google+ Stefanos Stamoulacatos drilled corner kick after corner kick toward the box in the final two minutes of the game. Down by one goal, Syracuse had chance after chance but couldn’t convert.One kick sailed out of bounds. The next was swatted away. The final one – with less than a minute remaining – was booted downfield.Syracuse (2-1) attempted 11 corner kicks while Niagara (2-0-1) attempted zero, but the Orange failed to capitalize on its opportunities and lost 2-1 to the Purple Eagles Friday night at SU Soccer Stadium.“Our corner kicks were as effective as their corner kicks tonight,” head coach Ian McIntyre said.In its first three games, Syracuse has taken 31 corner kicks compared to six by its opponents. The Orange has also outshot its opponents 48-24.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAgainst Albany, Tony Asante converted on one of Syracuse’s 22 shots in the Orange’s 2-0 win. And against Binghamton, Jordan Vale scored the decisive goal in a 1-0 victory with a header off a corner from Jordan Murrell.But on Friday night, balls frequently sailed way over the box on SU’s corner attempts, and the Orange failed to find the back of the net on any of its 11 set chances.“Maybe we pumped the balls up more this time,” McIntyre said. “In all seriousness, it’s a warm, humid night and the balls can fly a little bit. Also, the adrenaline is pumping. We’ll be better on that.”McIntyre tweaked the game plan slightly in the second half, designating Stamoulacatos to take the corners on the left side in place of Vale.“We switched it because (Vale) scored a goal against Binghamton and we thought he would be better in the box and not taking corner kicks on the right side,” Stamoulacatos said.While Stamoulacatos replaced Vale, Murrell remained the man on the right side of the field. He fired ball after ball toward streaking teammates, but Louis Clark, Lars Muller and Ted Cribley all came away empty-handed.Skylar Thomas said McIntyre devotes 5-10 minutes at the beginning and end of every practice to restart situations, including corner kicks. But the preparation didn’t translate for the Orange against the Purple Eagles.Though Niagara’s defense was reliable and thwarted SU attacks, Thomas knows he and his teammates need to improve on corners moving forward.“That’s poor. We’ve got to practice that in practice and improve, and hopefully it gets better,” Thomas said. “We just set them up in the box. It’s frustrating, kind of like the story last year, always losing by one.“We’ll bounce back from that.”Despite falling in a 2-0 hole, the Orange remained resilient. A goal by Asante in the 65th minute that skirted by goalie Brett Petricek cut the deficit to one.Syracuse created chances in the final 25 minutes and put pressure on the Niagara defense, but the team never evened the score.In the 78th minute, Cribley directed a ball toward a cutting Stamoulacatos but a Niagara defender intercepted the misplaced ball. Two minutes later, a Stamoulacatos corner kick was headed away and the Purple Eagles took possession.Syracuse would quickly regain possession. Asante shielded off his defender and delivered a touch pass to Muller who couldn’t put it away, mishitting the ball to give Niagara goalkeeper Brett Petricek an easy save.Slight miscues on corners and touch passes – especially in the final minutes – doomed the Orange in its first loss of the season.“Ultimately restarts are a big piece of any game,” McIntyre said. “If we can nick one at the end we’re back in the game. Hopefully with the law of averages, we’ll get one next time.” Commentslast_img

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