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Alex Crognale leads Terps past Hofstra, 2-1

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Alex Crognale made sure his senior day would be a celebration. The defender scored two goals in the first 20 minutes to lead the No. 1 Maryland men’s soccer team to a 2-1 victory over Hofstra on Friday night, keeping them unbeaten at 13-0-2 in the process.

In just the fifth minute of the game the Terps set up for a free kick with several bodies in the box. The initial try was stuffed by Hofstra, but the Pride were unable to clear the ball and a scramble inside the eight-yard box led to a Terps goal. At the end of the scramble Gordon Wild sent a shot pass in front to Crognale and the senior finished the shot from point-blank range into the left side.

Senior Alex Crognale ensured a senior-day victory with two goals in the first 20 minutes against Hofstra.

Senior Alex Crognale ensured a senior-day victory with two goals in the first 20 minutes against Hofstra.

Fifteen minutes later, Crognale scored his sixth goal of the year directly off a free kick. Amar Sejdic served the ball towards the back post from outside the box on the left wing. Crognale came storming forward and got his head on the ball and put it into the opposite side of the goal.

With a defense led by Crognale, Maryland was able to hold onto their 2-0 lead until very late when the Pride netted one goal when Meshack Eshun Addy scored from 10 yards out into the back post, but five saves by senior goalkeeper Cody Niedermeier prevented any more Hofstra scores.

Along with Crognale and Niedermeier, seniors Cody Albrecht, Suli Dainkeh, Emmanuel Korvah and Chris Odoi-Atsem were honored during a senior ceremony before the game.

“I’m delighted for our seniors tonight,” head coach Sasho Cirovski said. “This was a hard-fought, well-earned victory against a very good opponent in Hofstra. Coming off a very difficult game on Tuesday, to play a team that had a week’s rest and is as good as Hofstra, is a difficult challenge. I thought we made the plays in the first half to give us a cushion and we knew the second half would be difficult. We were pushed back and forced to defend and we absorbed some pressure and made some plays.

“We certainly feel good about coming out on top. I’m proud of our guys and especially for our seniors. I’m happy Emmanuel Korvah was able to get in the game and I’m so happy for Alex Crognale who had two goals. Once again Cody Niedermeier made fantastic saves and Suli Dainkeh was outstanding today, as was Cody Albrecht. I thought the seniors led the way and the rest of the players filled in. I’m also really pleased for Aaron Franco who came back from an injury to play a pivotal role in the midfield at the end of the game. All in all, it was a good night against a good opponent. I wish we could’ve gotten the shutout, but Hofstra deserved a goal.”

Hofstra actually out-shot Maryland 10-6 and had all three corner kicks in the game.

Maryland will conclude their four-game home stand on Tuesday when they host Delaware at 7 pm in a third-straight non-conference game.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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