Sophomore forward Matt Hoff (24), shown here in earlier action, scored his first goal of the season in the Crimson's 4-2 win over Hartford on Friday.
AMHERST, Mass.—While the Harvard men’s soccer team’s offense exploded for seven goals, its opponents managed to put up impressive numbers in the infractions category, picking up nine yellow and two red cards in action against the Crimson this weekend.
Harvard (3-2-0) beat UMass (2-4-0) 3-1 yesterday and Hartford (2-4-1) 4-2 in a downpour on Friday to win its first ever UMass Classic championship. Junior midfielder Anthony Tornaritis was named the tournament’s MVP after picking up two goals and one assist, giving him three goals for the season. Sophomore forward Matt Hoff, junior midfielder Brian Charnock and senior defenders Sam Wiggin and Jason Anderson also garnered all-tournament team selections.
“It’s definitely nice from a defensive standpoint to have [the offense] score,” said junior captain and defender Will Craig. “But it’s sometimes frustrating when we had 23 shots against Hartford and we only ended up with four goals. We should have had eight or nine in my opinion.”
HARVARD 3, UMASS 1
After a physical start to the game, the Crimson caught a break when the Minutemen’s Tim Kitchell was served a red card during the 30th minute of play for kicking senior midfielder Pablo Koe-Krompecher while he was down on the ground to give Harvard a one-man advantage. Less than 10 minutes later, the Crimson had broken the game open and held a 2-0 lead.
The first score came off of a free kick from a couple yards in front of the half-line. Craig took the kick and sent it sailing into the penalty box, where the ball found the foot of Hoff, who one-timed it into the back of the net.
“Normally on that kind of play I’m just trying to get it to the top of the box,” Craig said. “But with the wind, I was able to nip it over them and get it pretty far in.”
After a goal from Tornaritis a few minutes later, Harvard sealed the deal with a goal from junior midfielder Nicholas Tornaritis, Anthony’s brother. Anthony provided an assist on the play for his brother, which coach John Kerr named his favorite of the weekend.
“It’s nice to see Nick finally get one, because he’s been knocking at the door for so long,” Kerr said.
Senior Jamie Roth saw his first action in goal this year after junior Ryan Johnson sat out because of a groin injury he suffered before playing the Hawks on Friday. Johnson suffered shoulder and calf injuries last season which limited his ability to start in goal and Kerr said he was not sure who he would start in net Wednesday against UVM.
Roth—who had zero saves during his time in net but still left with a shutout—was taken out with less than eight minutes to play so that freshman Adam Hahn could see some action. But at the 85:54 mark, UMass connected with a score after a corner kick.
“I was upset that we didn’t get the shutout,” Craig said.
Sophomore forward Charles Althek may also not be seen against the Catamounts this week. Altchek went down holding his right knee 10 minutes into the match, but managed to walk off the field under his own power. The extent of his injury is not yet known, but Kerr said that he “wishes [Altchek] is day-to-day.”
HARVARD 4, HARTFORD 2
After scoring three goals in as many games, Harvard equaled that amount in the second half alone against Hartford in a physical, rainy contest. Though each goal was scored by a different player, both Hoff and Charnock managed to pick up a score and an assist. Even the goalie got in on the scoring action when Johnson provided the assist for freshman midfielder Michael Fucito’s first goal in a Crimson uniform.
Fucito was also a key player in another pivotal moment during the 58th minute. While struggling for a loose ball, both he and his Hawk defender fell to the ground, prompting several players and the ref to rush to the scene. After speaking with the players, play resumed with a free kick awarded to Hartford.
But shortly thereafter, one of the Hawks ran into senior midfielder Chandis—who came back swinging against Hartford. Chandis was eventually wrestled to the ground before getting up and going after the pack again. The scuffle around midfield ended up involving several different members from both teams, and resulted in a 10-minute delay and ejections for Chandis and the Hawks’ Kenniel Martin.
“Yeah, that’s the lacrosse player in him,” Craig said of his two-sport teammate. “There were a lot of cheap shots on both sides.”
Following the ejection, Hartford coach Jim Evans was visibly upset. He was eventually given a yellow card at the 78:54 mark after yelling at the official that the only reason a certain foul wasn’t called was because the person committing it “goes to Harvard.” Following the match, Evans refused to shake the outstretched hand of assistant coach Bruce Murray and all of the other Crimson players and coaches, and quickly called all of his players off of the field.
“I’d rather not comment about the Hartford coach,” Craig said.
The Crimson plays its first home game of the season on Wednesday at 3 p.m. against UVM.
—Staff writer Evan R. Johnson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.