SALISBURY, Md. – The Capital Athletic Conference No. 1-seeded Salisbury University men's soccer team hosted the No. 4-seeded University of Mary Washington in a CAC semifinal matchup and came away with a 2-0 victory.
Salisbury got on the board early in the fifth minute with the first shot of the game. The Gulls took it deep into the Eagles' zone and were awarded a corner kick. Matt Greene took the corner and put it to the back-left post. Brooks Zentgraf was directly in line with the post and redirected the ball with his head inches inside the post to beat the Eagles' keeper for his sixth goal of the season.
In the middle portion of the first half, the Eagles were able to control the game and went on a span of getting three corners in a row before Salisbury regained possession.
Starting around 10 minutes left in the half, the teams played exciting back-and-forth soccer for the rest of the half, with both sides getting great opportunities. At half's end, Drew Staedeli had stopped all three attempts Mary Washington put on net, while the Sea Gulls' goal came on their lone shot on goal of the half.
Salisbury started the second half just like the first, quickly getting down field and coming away with an early marker.
Brad Martinelli played a large part in the team transitioning from defense to offense and had the ball on his foot to the left of the 18-yard box. The ball eventually found Leslie Umunna who was centered with the net around 20 yards out. Umunna ripped a shot to the right side of the net that beat Matt Spencer.
The goal for Umunna was his sixth of the season. Also, the goal marks the fourth time that Salisbury has gotten goals from Umunna and Zentgraf in the same game. Salisbury is 4-0 in those contests.
Mary Washington was handed a red card in the 60th minute and had to attempt the comeback with 10 men.
Though they just had 10 men, the Eagles had some great chances to cut into Salisbury's lead. Jacob Burke had a breakaway that Staedeli played aggressively to cut down Burke's angle. As Staedeli slid into Burke, Burke put a shot into his chest that took an Eagles' bounce. The rebound, with Staedeli now out of position, found Riley Fisher. Fischer took a shot before Staedeli was able to recover, but a Sea Gulls' defender blocked the shot.
Staedeli ended the contest with five saves, picking up his eighth shutout of the year along the way.
Salisbury returns to action on Saturday, November 7 when it will host No. 6-seeded St. Mary's College of Maryland in the CAC championship game. St. Mary's beat York College of Pennsylvania on Wednesday evening in overtime to move onto the championship game.