WEST POINT - The Army men’s soccer team clinched a spot in the Patriot League Championship for the first time since 1996, earning a 1-0 conference victory over Lehigh on Saturday evening’s Senior Day at Clinton Field. With the win, the Black Knights, who are ranked sixth in the current National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) Mid-Atlantic Region poll, improve to 12-1-1 overall and 6-0-0 in the league, while the Mountain Hawks drop to 2-11-1 and 1-5-0.
Freshman forward Nick Williams scored for the second game in a row for Army, while junior back Tommy Jaeger and freshman midfielder Alex Jaroscak added assists. Junior goalkeeper Winston Boldt made five saves without surrendering a goal to extend his Academy record to 11 shutouts for the season. Boldt entered tonight’s action with the nation’s third-best save percentage (.908) and fourth-best goals against average mark (.442). After tonight’s action, the Black Knights lead the nation with an .892 win-loss-tie percentage.
For Lehigh, freshman goalie Jacob Gottwald stopped three shots.
Army registered four shots on target in the first 13:28 of the contest, as freshman Christian Ollen’s shot was saved by Gottwald before attempts by Jaeger and classmate Sean Mogan were directed away by the Lehigh defense. The Mountain Hawks only chance of the period came in the 18th minute when junior midfielder Matt Shreiner’s shot sailed over the Black Knight crossbar. Mogan sent a shot high in the 44th minute, as both teams went to the locker room tied at 0-0.
Boldt made his first save of the match on a shot by freshman back Gianfranco Giammatteo in the 53rd minute before Army won three corner kicks during the ensuing 5:25. The Black Knights scored on the final corner kick of the sequence, as Jaeger’s corner from the right side was angled across the goalmouth by Jaroscak before Williams headed home the goal to give his team a 1-0 advantage. Boldt stopped three Mountain Hawk chances during a six-minute span midway through the second half to keep the visitors off the board. Boldt made one final stop on Giammetteo’s shot in the 89th minute to preserve his team’s three points.
Black Knight senior midfielder Jason Lewis was honored in a Senior Day ceremony prior to the game.
The Black Knights return to the pitch on Wednesday, October 30th, as it travels to Worcester, Mass., for a top-three Patriot League showdown with Holy Cross. Game time is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.