St. John’s holds No. 16 to 0-0 tie

SJU can’t find golden goal against Golden Eagles

St. John’s battled No. 16 Marquette to a scoreless double overtime draw on a frigid night at Belson Stadium. The Red Storm offense looked strong as they controlled possession and totaled 19 shots throughout the match. Senior Rafael Diaz posted his sixth shutout of the season, providing two timely saves and anchoring the Red Storm defense.

The Red Storm (7-6-2, 0-4-2) got off to a quick start as they dominated possession from the opening whistle, linking up their passes and forcing pressure on Marquette’s (9-3-2, 5-0-1) back line. Early chances were created by junior playmaker Marco Bordon. His stellar wing play resulted in precise crosses, providing problems for the physical, yet pacey Marquette back line.

Solid defensive performances were turned in by center backs Tim Parker and Gabriel Camara. The duo played the entire match, totaling 110 minutes each while limiting Marquette to only two shots on goal.

“I think we did really well tonight,” Camara said. “Sometimes the goals don’t come, but we hit the post twice and their keeper made some very good saves.”

In the 13th minute, sophomore Cody Albrecht found a seam in the Marquette defense, firing a shot from 25 yards out. His bending effort beat the keeper, but smashed the left post, rebounding back into play. Albrecht finished the game with two shots, both long-range efforts that troubled the Marquette keeper.

Fast-forward to the 54th minute when St. John’s best opportunity would come at the feet of sophomore midfielder Danny Bedoya. On a miscued header, Bedoya gathered the bouncing ball and sent in a curling effort from 23 yards out. His shot was placed well, beating the keeper but once again the Red Storm was denied by the post.

Team leading goal scorer Sean Sepe proved to be the catalyst for several St. John’s attacks. He led the game with five shots in his limited 67 minutes played.

As a late substitution, sophomore Jelani Williams came on to add additional attacking options for the Johnnies. In only 18 minutes, he managed one shot on goal and manufactured dangerous runs inside Marquette’s final third.

Both overtime periods were fairly reserved. Sporadic shots were attempted by each side, nothing troubled either keeper and the matched ended in a 0-0 deadlock.

“It’s a tough conference and Marquette has a great team,” head coach Dr. Dave Masur said. “We feel a little unfortunate, but we have to battle forward. We’re just building on every game, every games a new adventure and a new story.”

Highlighted performances for the Golden Eagles included junior goalkeeper Charlie Lyon, who made eight saves for Marquette and added another shutout to his already impressive total of seven.

Still winless in conference play, the Red Storm look to rebound on the road this coming Saturday against a No. 23 ranked Butler squad.

“We got Butler coming up on Saturday,” Masur said. “They’re a great team and we have to make sure we go out there and play well.”