Brown ends Men’s Soccer Team’s Season in Second Round of NCAA Tourney

After winning the Big East Tournament just one week ago, the St. John’s men’s soccer team’s season has ended after a 1-0 loss to Brown in the second round of the NCAA Tournament Sunday night at Belson Stadium.


Brown’s (12-4-3) junior defender Dylan Remick scored the game-winning goal in the 48th minute that saw the Bears through to the third round for the second consecutive season.


After picking up on a loose ball in the St. John’s half of the field, Brown’s freshman forward Ben Maury sprinted down the left wing before squaring a low ball to Remick. Remick attempted to guide the ball on target but his shot deflected off of a St. John’s defender and into sophomore keeper Alex Naples’ net.


Sunday’s loss marked the Red Storm’s (14-7-2) second scoreless outing against their Ivy League opponents this year after playing to a scoreless draw with them on Oct. 4.


“We’re a team that is tough to score on,” explained Brown head coach Patrick Laughlin. “I think that’s a difficulty for most opponents that come against us.”


The Johnnies had the better scoring opportunities in the first half, most of them resulting from the play of junior midfielder Jack Bennett, who starred in last weeks Big East Tournament Final by scoring the game-winning goal against Connecticut. However, despite creating the better chances in the first 45 minutes, the Red Storm went into halftime with the score deadlocked at zero just after losing their co-captain and Big East co-Midfielder of the Year Pablo Battuto Punyed to injury. Punyed did not return to the game in the second half.


“In the first half we had three or four good looks at the goal and we weren’t able to connect,” said St. John’s head coach Dave Masur.


Despite failing to seriously threaten Alex Naples in the first half, Brown came out of the gates quick in the second half by scoring just three minutes after the restart.


“We just made a couple of little mistakes,” said senior defender Connor Lade.


After scoring, Brown quickly dropped back and began to absorb the onslaught of Red Storm offensive pressure that ensued. Despite mustering up a couple of decent looks on goal, the Johnnies could not find a breakthrough.


To make matters worse, just seconds after whipping in a dangerous cross that was headed over the net by Jimmy Mulligan, senior fullback Chris Lebo was shown a red card for a sliding tackle in the 76th minute. The fans at Belson immediately made their opinion of referee Kenneth Henriques’ decision known with a flurry of boos. Henriques had already handed out two yellow cards earlier in the game to a St. John’s team that had not been booked since the 2009 season.


“In the last couple of years we’ve committed the least amount of fouls in the Big East,” said Masur. “Each game takes on its own atmosphere and it just happens to go that way.”


After Lebo made his exit from Belson Stadium for the last time in his collegiate career, the Johnnies tried to find an equalizer, but fell short after freshman forward Pascal Trappe headed an effort wide of the net which ended up being the Johnnies last shot of the 2011 season.


Immediately after the final whistle blew the St. John’s players dropped to the Belson turf in dejection as the Brown players trotted over to their fans, hands clapping above their heads in appreciation.


“It’s pretty tough to go out like that,” explained Lade. “I thought we played really hard all season, I thought we put ourselves in a good spot going into [the NCAA Tournament], and it’s just really tough.”