Breaking News: Drexel class of 2022 celebrates in-person commencement at Citizens Bank ParkBreaking News: Drexel class of 2022 celebrates in-person commencement at Citizens Bank Park
Victory over Towson secures CAA playoff spot | The Triangle

Victory over Towson secures CAA playoff spot

tyguy

The Drexel University men’s soccer season came to an end with a pair of 1-0 losses last week to William & Mary University Oct. 29 and College of Charleston Nov. 1.

With the two losses, the Dragons extended their double-digit losing streak to 12 consecutive games. During that 12 game stretch, the Dragons managed to score just two goals.

The Tribe dominated the game Oct. 29 from the first blow of the whistle. In the first 12 minutes, the Tribe outshot the Dragons six to one. Fortunately for the Dragons, none of those six shots by the Tribe were on goal.

Finally in the 20th minute, the Tribe got a shot on goal, but it was met by the hands of Afflerbach, who picked up what would be the first of many saves on the afternoon. Afflerbach saved two more shots before the first half came to a close.

In the closing seconds of the half, the Dragons had a chance to take the lead when sophomore Robert Smith put a shot on goal halfway through the 45th minute. However, Smith’s shot attempt was saved by the Tribe’s goalkeeper Phil Breno and the two teams entered halftime scoreless.

The Dragons were outshot 12 to 3 in the first half, and that differential would only get worse in the second half. Smith’s shot at the end of the first would be the final one attempted by a Dragon.

In the second half, the Tribe got off 16 shot attempts, but they struggled to find the back of the net.

Part of their struggles could be attributed to Tyler Afflerbach’s all-time career effort. Afflerbach saved seven shots in the second half, which gave him ten saves for entire game, a new career high. With his save against William Eskay’s shot in the 67th minute, Afflerbach moved into a tie with Mike Habermann for sixth place on the Drexel career saves list. Less than two minutes later, Afflerbach picked up another saves to move into sole possession of sixth place.

Entering the final minutes of play, it appeared as if Afflerbach’s historic effort would be enough to force the game into overtime. However, in the 89th minute, Antonio Bustamante broke the scoreless tie and the Dragons’ hearts with a goal off of an assist from Eskay. The Dragons had no time to counter, so the game ended as a 1-0 win for the Tribe.

Unfortunately for Afflerbach, it was more of the same story in the Dragons 1-0 loss to the  the College of Charleston Nov. 1.

In the season finale, both the Dragons and the College of Charleston Cougars struggled offensively. As a team, the Dragons managed just one shot attempt in the first half, which came when junior Colin McGlynn headed the ball towards the Cougars goal, but it was blocked by a defender.

The Cougars managed to get a few shots on goal, but Drexel’s senior keeper Tyler Afflerbach was a brick wall in his final game as a Dragon. Afflerbach made three saves within a 12 minute stretch during the first half.

With the score tied at halftime, the Dragons were still in position to put an end to their losing streak.

Following an Afflerbach save in the 46th minute, the Dragons went on the attack and junior Erik Alexandersson was able to place a shot on goal in the 49th minute only to be sent away by the Cougar’s goalkeeper Brian Kilgallon.

Kilgallon’s save swung the momentum in the favor of the Cougars, who attacked down the field and broke the scoreless tie when Vebjorn Krovel assisted Paul Burdick on a goal in the 52nd minute.

Following Burdick’s goal, there was a lull in offensive action until the 70th minute when Drexel freshman Daniel Klemm headed shot wide of the goal post on an attempt to equalize the score.

A few moments later in the 75 minute, the Cougars put pressure on the Dragons defense, but Afflerbach again stood tall and saved three shots in a span of four minutes.

With 31 seconds remaining in the game, the Dragons got one final shot to draw even with the Cougars when junior Connor Ryan fired a shot towards the Cougars goal. Ryan’s shot was blocked by the Cougar defense. Shortly after, the clock ran out and the game ended 1-0 in favor of the Cougars.

In a losing effort, Afflerbach had a tremendous game for the Dragons. He finished the day with seven saves against the Cougars.

The losses brought the Dragons’ record to 1-14-2 on the season and 0-8 in the Colonial Athletic Association. In the seventeen games they played, the Dragons managed to score just seven goals.