Howard Shows Improvement In loss To GW
Washington, DC-August 27-On the season record, it shows up as another loss for the Howard University men's soccer team. But Bison head coach Keith Tucker was encouraged despite the 2-0 loss to George Washington University in the DC Cup Classic at Reeves Field on the campus of American University.
"It's a loss and we're a little disappointed, but I think there are a lot of positives that we can get from this tournament," explained Tucker. "Last year, we came in this tournament knowing that we had the defense to compete, but we were not sure about our offense. Judging from what I saw in these two matches, we are further ahead that last year this time and it is just a matter to time before it will all come together."
Just as in the first round loss to American, the Bison played strong in the opening half and appeared to be headed for intermission in a scoreless deadlock. But the Colonials' Greg McKay got a fortuitous pass off a deflection by the Howard defense and was able to get it into the net with just six seconds before the half.
"It was just like the first goal by American on Friday," said Tucker, referring to the game's first goal on a corner kick in the 2-0 loss. "You can't blame on the goalkeeper or the defense; it's just one of those things that happens in soccer."
Howard (0-2-0) re-grouped in the second half and had several opportunities, but just as in the American loss, the opportunities ended up as near misses.
"We are evolving on offense," explained Tucker. "We have some young players like Joel Senior, who just need to get a better understanding of what we are trying to do. Once they do, you will see the difference."
Senior is a highly-touted freshman, who has tremendous potential. He is high-energy and his speed gives the Bison an added dimension. Senior led all players with four shots, including three on goal.
The Colonials (1-1-0), who had dropped a 5-2 decision to Georgetown in the opening round, got an insurance goal from Thomas Stuber on an assist from McKay in the 83rd minute when Howard played a man short after Marcel Storer was issued a red card.
The Bison were much more aggressive in the second half where 18 fouls were called and five yellow cards and a red card were issued. For the game, GW out-shot the Bison, 17-12, but Howard just lost the battle in shots-on-goal, 6-5.
Howard returns to action on Wednesday, August 30 when its hosts Mount Saint Mary's in the home opener at 7 pm in Greene Stadium.