FAIRFIELD, Conn. – Junior forward Justin Brewer (Somers, Conn.) propelled the Sacred Heart University men's soccer team to a season-opening 2-0 victory over Saint Peter's, Thursday evening on Campus Field. Brewer tallied his first score of the game in the fifth minute of play and assisted on a goal in the 82nd.
Brewer's goal was a hard shot past a diving keeper to the lower right corner of the goal, assisted by junior right midfielder Edwin Victor (Bridgeport, Conn.), at the 4:11 mark.
The Peacocks (0-2) attempted to answer back, less than 10 minutes later, as freshman forward Noah Sadoui made a move into the box and floated a shot out of the reach of SHU junior goalkeeper Alex Fait (Ottawa, Ont.) that drifted just over the cross bar. In the 19th minute, Brewer made a bid for a second score of the half. He cut left at the top of the box to beat his defender and go one-on-one with the goalie. Junior keeper Carlos Suarez came off his line and made a stuff save to end the Pioneer threat.
Early in the second half, SHU forward Johnny El-Hachem (Vernon, Conn.) collided with Suarez in the box. After a short delay, the two players were given straight red cards after a brief clash. Each team totaled thwo yellow cards and one red for the game, while combining for 35 fouls.
In the 64th minute, Saint Peter's junior mid Stephen Carty directed a header off of a free kick toward the goal, but was turned away by a leaping save from Fait. Junior defender Simon Harrsen (Almdorf, Germany) nearly put Sacred Heart up by two with a chip shot of the post in the 76th minute.
Harrsen, making his Pioneer debut, would finally put the ball in the back of the net as he hammered home a shot from a pass off the heel of Brewer at the 82:19 mark. The play developed with a one-two pass between sophomore defender Omer Levy (Yahud, Israel) and Victor, who sent the ball into the box, on the right wing.
The win marked the 50th career victory at the helm of the men's program for Sacred Heart head coach Joe Barroso. Between 15 years with the SHU men's and women's programs, Barroso has amassed 121 victories.
Fait stopped both shots on goal to earn the shutout, while Suarez provided three saves before making way to his replacement junior Johan Romero, who made one. For the game, Sacred Heart outshot Saint Peter's 13-9.
The Pioneers return to action at Columbia, the first of four straight road games, Sunday afternoon at 3:00 pm.