The Syracuse Orange continued their murderer’s row of matches beating the Akron Zips 3-1 on Monday night, behind a Jonathan Hagman hat-trick. This match puts the Orange at 4-3-1 on the year and back in the winning ways for the season.
Heading into the match-up, the Orange (3-3-1) headed to the Zips (3-3-1), with a bit of a need to get back on track. Adding a healthy Jan Breitenmoser on the left flank definitely didn’t hurt the cause, or should I say Breiten Moser as the lineup showed him. Morgan Hackworth is also a midfielder for the Zips, who played for the Orange in 2015 and 2016 and transferred to Akron prior to last season. He now starts for Akron in the midfield.
Off the bat, Syracuse pushed hard, playing in a 3-5-2, the standard three at the back, but switching to a two man defensive midfield with Djimon Johnson and Hugo Delhommelle both playing in a double pivot, Hagman in the 10 and Massimo Ferrin on the left, Tajon Buchanan on the right.
Akron pushed on the counter and almost snagged one in the seventh minute, with Diogo Pacheco almost putting one cross goal on Hendrick Hilpert. The shot went wide, preserving the clean sheet for the time being. Akron controlled a good chunk of the half, almost grabbing another in the 22nd minute if not for a phenomenal tip save by Hilpert prior to a barrage of corners.
Breitenmoser was relieved for Simon Triantafillou at the 27th minute of the first half. This was Triantafillou’s first run on the left side in the wingback position on the year. Ryan Raposo also got some run on the right side of the midfield, again as a wingback for the first time this season, while Julio Fulcar filled in aptly in the double pivot.
Completely against the run of play, Johnathan Hagman slotted home a rebounded goal on the Tajon Buchanan shot for a 1-0 lead. Play was intercepted by Len Zeugner, who knocked a clearance on to Massimo Ferrin, laying the ball off to Buchanan streaking up the right flank. Buchanan forced a save, putting the ball on target, which was spilled directly into the path of Hagman, which he put home for the go-ahead goal.
The Orange began pressuring, resulting in a nice chance by Buchanan which lead to a corner. Said corner arced beautifully to Tajon Buchanan, who again put it on frame, forcing a save, which bounced right to Hagman for a brace on the night. The Orange had been pressing the tempo a bit in the half and it definitely paid off.
It's a final! Hagman with the trick to lead the Orange. Next up: #1 Wake Forest Friday at 7 p.m. at the Soccer Stadium. pic.twitter.com/99UhJBfzaX— SU Men's Soccer (@CuseMSOC) October 2, 2018
After a spell where the Orange continued to put some pressure on, Severin Soirle served in a solid shot, which was again saved, dropping right to the feet of Hagman yet again. It was Jonathan Hagman’s first hat trick for the Orange and his first three goals on the season, who got his rest with 23 minutes left.
In the 84th minute, Colin Biros got one back for the Zips. The goal was a slot off the buildup from Akron who had been limited on the half. It pulled it back to 3-1, but was ultimately too little too late for the Zips on the night. The Orange closed out a win on the road against a quality opponent.
The Orange take the momentum from this match into a huge game against the #1 Wake Forest Demon Deacons this Friday at SU Soccer Stadium. If there’s a chance you make it out to the Hill this year, this is the match. The game will kick off at 7pm.