The Hofstra men’s soccer team broke a three-game losing streak Saturday, defeating Elon 3-1 to finish out the regular season. Next up is the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) tournament, which Hofstra will host by virtue of earning the top overall seed in the tournament.
For the season, the Pride finished at the top of the CAA standings, going 7-1 in conference play and 9-7-1 overall.
The 7-1 finish is Hofstra’s best CAA record since joining the league in 2002.
Right behind the Pride is the Delaware Fightin’ Blue Hens. They finished out their 2016 season by dropping their final game 1-0 against UNCW.
These two powerhouses may meet down the road in tournament play but the Pride currently holds the advantage, as they defeated the Fightin’ Blue Hens on Oct. 1, 2-1.
In a game in which the Pride needed to gain momentum going into CAA tournament play, they surely got a boost from their normal goal scorers. Although he is coming off a slumping 2016 season in comparison to his outstanding 2015 campaign, Joseph Holland was able to give the Pride a 1-0 lead right before going into half. This was the first goal Holland has scored since the season opener.
Shortly after the half, the Phoenix responded. Moments after goalkeeper Alex Ashton saved a free kick, the ball was shot back into the box. It clanked off the post, falling right in front of forward Amir Berkane. He then netted his first goal of the season, tying the game at one goal apiece.
Within less than eight minutes, freshman Luke Brown gave the Pride a 2-1 lead. This was Brown’s seventh goal of the season, putting him in sole possession for the team lead.
Most freshmen do not even see playing time, but he is a rare case. Brown has played over 50 minutes in every game but two, and his production for the Pride has lifted the team to the top of the CAA.
It only took the Pride a few more minutes to put the game out of reach. In the 78th minute, Meshack Eshun Addy delivered his sixth goal on the season, tying Danny Elliott. The 22-yard strike gave Hofstra the commanding 3-1 lead.
From then on the Pride did not look back, finishing the game with the 3-1 victory. Next up for Hofstra is the CAA Tournament. The Pride will receive a bye to the semifinals being held on Nov. 11.
Hofstra will then take on the winner of this weekend’s first quarterfinal matchup between the fourth and fifth-seeded teams in the tournament.