Hagman OT Goal gives Syracuse 3-2 win over St. John’s
By Christian De Guzman
SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Syracuse and St. John’s are no longer in the same athletic conference, but it did not feel like a non-conference game on Sunday
“Tonight was an ACC game,” said Syracuse head coach Ian McIntyre. “You felt it, the intensity. They pushed us the whole way.”
St. John’s pushed Syracuse enough that a stunning overtime goal from sophomore midfielder Jonathan Hagman was required to give the Orange a 3-2 victory over the Red Storm. Hagman was able to finish a half-volley from the edge of the box and fire the ball into the top left corner of the net.
“I don’t remember scoring a goal like that ever,” said Hagman.
Syracuse and St. John’s scored 2 goals each in regulation. SU would get its goals in the 44th and 82nd minute from sophomore defender Miles Robinson, who was in the right position during two set pieces in order to place the ball into the back of the net. Set pieces were a key part in SU’s success last year, and it appears that the Orange will rely on the execution of set pieces again in 2016
“It’s definitely something we work on,” said Robinson. “Coach expects goals from set pieces, and we provided today.”
“Set pieces are about going and attacking it, but also the quality of the service,” said McIntyre. “I felt for a number of those we put some good balls into the box.”
The Orange found itself in a unique position on Sunday as well. After St. John’s scored two great goals in the 56th and 65th minute, Syracuse was trailing in a game for the first time in the 2016 season. After St. John’s made it 2-1, SU was able to rebound nicely and aggressive attack the box of the Red Storm.
“We may have pouted for 4, 5 minutes, and then we grew in the game,” said McIntyre.
The offense of Syracuse performed well against a Red Storm defense that had yet to concede a goal in the 2016 season. SU continued a trend of out-shooting opponents, holding a 15 to 9 shot advantage over St. John’s on Sunday. Syracuse also has an impressive 11 goals over 4 games to start the 2016 campaign.
But while Syracuse has performed well so far in 2016, McIntyre realizes that there is a lot of work that still needs to be done before a tough ACC schedule that features 6 teams, including Syracuse, in the top 11 national rankings.
“We got a lot of bodies that we are still working in,” said McIntyre. “It’s going to take some time, but if we can find ways like we did tonight to win these kinds of difficult games, we’ll be good going forward.”
It certainly must feel scary to the rest of the ACC that a Syracuse team that has scored 11 goals and conceded 3 goals in the first 4 games of the season needs to improve.