Syracuse Dominates Possession and Chances to secure 1-0 versus Virginia Tech
By Christian De Guzman
SYRACUSE, NY – Sergio Camargo was able to laugh after Friday’s game.
“I don’t know what you’re saying,” said Camargo. “That’s probably the nicest goal I’ve ever scored in my life.”
Camargo’s goal was not the prettiest, but the SU midfielder’s goal in the 64th minute was enough to give No. 10 Syracuse a much needed 1-0 win over No. 15 Virginia Tech. The Orange snapped a four game winless streak with the victory, dating all the way back to September 20th.
The lone goal was very messy and scrappy. Syracuse midfielder Jonathan Hagman fired a shot from outside the box that was blocked by Virginia Tech defender Will Mejia. Hokie midfielder Collin Verfurth and Mejia could not clear the ball from the dangerous area, as it stayed inside the penalty box.
Camargo and Virginia Tech goalkeeper Ben Lundgaard saw the ball in open space and lunged toward it. The SU midfielder was able to get to the ball first and shot it between Lundgaard’s legs to give the Orange the 1-0 lead it deserved.
Syracuse returned to form on Friday night as the midfield held possession and created many scoring chances for its forwards. The Orange fired 17 shots at the Hokies’ goal, while VT only managed six shots the entire game. Syracuse was able to string together passes and find open space to give everyone good looks at goal.
“When teams are kind of matching up like they did tonight, there are pockets of space,” said Syracuse head coach Ian McIntyre. “I thought we did a good job of getting in them.”
Captains Liam Callahan and Oyvind Alseth were widely used on Friday as the wings of the pitch were a spot that was often visited when the Orange held possession.
“We spread out the field more,” said Camargo. “[Virginia Tech] could not keep up with us because we kept switching sides.”
The Syracuse defense also received a boost as center back Miles Robinson returned to Central New York after playing with the USA under-20 national team. He played a key part in securing the 7th clean sheet of the season for Syracuse.
“It was a good experience,” said Robinson on his time with the national team. “All the guys out there are fun, just normal guys like me.”
Friday’s victory was very important for SU’s place in the ACC standings. The win puts the Orange in a three-way tie for 3rd place in the conference alongside Wake Forest and Notre Dame. Each school has 10 points in ACC play.
“This was a huge win,” said Robinson. “Definitely something to be proud of moving forward.”
Friday’s match also gave Syracuse something else to consider – the weather. The temperature during the game stayed around 45 degrees Fahrenheit. Luckily for Syracuse, the entire team was able to stay hot throughout the match to secure the crucial three points.
After the game, it was clear the cold played a factor.
“Can everyone stop shivering?” said coach McIntyre. “You’re not making me feel any warmer.”