CANTON, N.Y. -- Three first half goals, all by different players, propelled defending national champion St. Lawrence University to a 5-0 win over Plymouth State College Saturday afternoon in the first round of the NCAA Division III Northeast Men's Soccer Regional at Memorial Field.
Dustin Crooker made four saves in net for the Saints as they advance to play the winner of the Hamilton and Plattsburgh State game Sunday at Memorial Field at 1:00 p.m. PSC completes an excellent season under first-year head coach Keith Byrnes with a 15-5 overall record. St. Lawrence took control of the game early, missing several good chances in the first 10 minutes of the game before finally cashing in. A flurry of St. Lawrence shots were thwarted, but Jon-Michael Olmstead gained control of a rebound and shot from the top of the penalty box into the lower-right corner of the net. Plymouth State goaltender Brad Wilby (Hadonfield, N.J.) was screened on the shot and never had a chance at making the save as the Saints took a 1-0 lead 16:49 into the game.
Just under six minutes later, Allan Maragh scored the Saints' second goal, his third of the season. Scott Dulay extended the lead to 3-0 on a goal from Matt Bogosian at 28:18 of the first half. St. Lawrence goaltender Crooker was rarely challenged, but came up with the big save when he needed it, recording his eighth shutout of the season. Tomasz Trspis tacked on another goal with just over 10 minutes to play on breakaway, shooting past charging goaltender Wilby into the nearside of the net.
A yellow-card penalty inside the eighteen-yard box on Ceamus McDermott (Centerville, Mass.) with 2:38 left on the game clock gave the Saints a penalty kick opportunity. Howard Beckford took the kick and buried it in the lower-left hand corner of the net to cap the scoring at 5-0.
St. Lawrence advances to the Northeast Regional championship game and will face the winner of the Plattsburgh State/Hamilton game that will be played later Saturday. The championship game is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. Sunday at Memorial Field.