By Connor Giblin and Jake DeGruccio
POUGHKEEPSIE – Junior midfielder Henrique Cruz notched his first goal as a Red Fox, but Marist grinded out a gritty, 1-1 draw against Bryant on Saturday evening at Tenney Stadium.
The Red Foxes’ record moves to 3-3-1 on the year, while the Bulldogs shift to 1-3-2 this season.
Cruz’s blast gave Marist the 1-0 edge in the 16th minute, and it seemed that would stand at halftime. However, Bryant’s Ben Williams deposited a corner kick into the net in the 41st minute for the equalizer. Neither team found the back of the net the rest of the way.
Junior forward Stefan Copetti paced the home team with the assist on Cruz’s goal and a season-high seven shots, four of which were on target. Junior goalkeeper Dylan McDermott totaled three saves in his second start of the season.
Williams was one of six Bulldogs with a shot in the affair. Jack Bacon recorded 10 saves between the pipes.
Both teams wasted little time getting right to work, with multiple free kicks and corners within the first five minutes of play.
The Bulldogs were physical from the start, totaling five fouls in the opening 10 minutes.
On the goal-scoring play, Copetti retreated from inside the box and dropped it off to Cruz, who rocketed a 30-yard laser into the upper-right corner.
Marist continued to dominate the first half with six shots, five of them on goal, across four starters.
Bryant’s equalizer came when Keegan Reim inserted the corner kick. The ball bounced to Wiliams to the right of the box, and he connected on the shot.
McDermott logged his first save of the half in the 55th minute, denying Abdel Talabi.
Copetti continued to apply pressure on the offensive end in the 70th minute, but flicked a shot over the crossbar.
By the 80th minute of play, both teams remained tied at one apiece. Freshman forward Richard Morel had a swift one-timer in the box swallowed by Bacon at that point.
Senior midfielder Skylar Conway found room near the right corner in the 85th minute, but whipped a shot to Bacon.
At the end of regulation, the Red Foxes and Bulldogs remained deadlocked. Marist totaled 12 shots with nine on goal.
Marist had the only two shots of the first period from Copetti and junior defender Bernardo Gracindo, but both could not find the target.
After missing the mark in the 103rd minute, Copetti laced a shot on goal, but it found Bacon’s mitts.
Moments later, redshirt junior defender Demarre Montoute attempted a header off a throw-in, but it did not have enough to past Bacon.
Bryant did not register a shot on goal after regulation, with McDermott snuffing out multiple chances before they got close.
“I thought we did enough to win it, but I’m frustrated for the guys. We had some great chances and dominated possession, but that’s going to happen. That’s why our game is frustrating sometimes, but you have to find a way later down along the road,” said Head Coach Matt Viggiano.
On the home crowd during the three home matches, Viggiano said, “It was great. It seems like we got a lot of support from the student body. It seems like the local community is coming out to watch. We have a good product, which I think helps. It’s rewarding, and the team loves it.”
Marist’s next faceoff will be on the road against Cornell on Saturday, September 25th at 5 p.m. It marks the Red Foxes’ final game in non-conference play.