WORCESTER, Mass. - Holy Cross junior defender Tom Van Grinsven (Chicago, Ill.) made his lone shot of the game count, scoring the game-winning goal and the first goal of his career to lead the men's soccer team to a 2-0 shutout over American on senior day at the Linda Smith Soccer Stadium Saturday. Holy Cross moves to 5-10 overall and is now an even 3-3 in the Patriot League after beating American who was undefeated in league play and is now 9-4-2 overall and goes to 4-1-1 in the league.
After neither team notched a score in the first half, the Crusaders earned a crucial free kick opportunity at 79:01. The team set up an opening for Van Grinsven to take one shot from the top of the eighteen. Van Grinsven used enough force to get the shot past American sophomore goalie Matt Makowski for the go-ahead goal. The shot was his sixth of the season and marks his first points in a Crusaders uniform.
Holy Cross put the game to bed at 83:48 on a fast break opportunity. After freshman Pat McCann (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) brought the ball down, he quickly passed from the right side to an open Kyle Miller (Woodbury, N.J.) who took the shot outside the eight. The shot snuck past Makowski, giving the Crusaders a 2-0 edge. The goal was Miller's second of the season, ending a 10 game scoring drought. McCann also recorded his first career assist.
In the contest, the Crusaders earned an 11-9 shots advantage while compiling two corner kicks. American had nine corner kick opportunities. Makowski finished with five saves on seven shots-on-goal while Holy Cross senior goalkeeper Thomas Booth (Patchogue, N.Y.) made one save on the way to his 16th career shutout and fourth on the season.
"Our boys showed tremendous character and the right ‘appetite' for this game," said head coach Ted Priestly. "American is talented and well-coached and it was always going to take and honest team effort to beat them. Fortunately, we produced our best today. Today's performance was the right way to honor a senior class that has given so much to Holy Cross soccer and our team made their last-ever home game a day to remember."
Holy Cross will compete in its final regular season game away at Army next Saturday, Nov. 7. Game time is set for 5:00 p.m. at Clinton Field in West Point, N.Y. Army is currently 0-5 in Patriot League play.