The Ohio State University is going to have nightmares about The Siena College. In 2009 it was Ronald “Onions” Moore’s two clutch threes that downed the Buckeyes near their home turf in Dayton in the NCAA Tournament. Monday, the latest upset in Siena-Ohio State history was written as the men’s soccer team stunned the 15th ranked Buckeyes 1-0 on the final day of the Penn State Classic in University Park, Pa.
“This win is outstanding for the program,” said an elated head coach Gareth Elliott. “The lads showed the heart of a lion this weekend and I can’t ask for anything more. They left everything on the field and I think with their resilience they really deserved the victory today.”
It was the program’s first-ever win against a ranked opponent and concluded a very strong weekend effort in Happy Valley in which the Saints’ (1-1) narrowly fell to tournament host No. 18 Penn State 1-0 Saturday night in an evenly played contest. With two solid games against a pair of ranked Big Ten teams, the Saints are showing everyone they have no problem playing with the big boys.
“To win vs. a ranked team and a Big Ten team like Ohio State is not easy,” added Elliott. “And to play two ranked teams from that conference in three days as well as we did I give all the credit to our guys. They were unbelievable.”
The unlikely hero during the match was redshirt sophomore reserve back Joe Miner. Playing in just his 10th career game, Miner scored arguably the biggest goal in program history for his first collegiate point.
Sindre Ek picked the ball up 40 yards out and made a quick pass to Joshua Vlasich who then slipped the ball between two defenders. Miner, who had entered the game as a substitution just three and a half minutes earlier, made a great run through and calmly slotted the shot inside the far post past the outstretched keeper.
Miner’s goal would hold up as although the Buckeyes (0-1-1) would control tempo throughout, they could not solve freshman keeper Jack Binks. Binks came up big once again in goal and made two saves – including a key stop on a header with 33 seconds remaining – to preserve the win and earn his first collegiate shutout.
Ohio State out-shot the Saints 26-8 and took 11 corners to just two for the Saints including margins of 19-4 and 7-0 in the second half. But the Buckeyes made little of their opportunities as they only mustered two of those shots on goal.
Ohio State’s Chris Hegngi took as many shots (eight) as the Saints while Matt Lampson stopped two shots in goal.
Flying high off their biggest win ever, the Saints will look to ride that momentum into their next game Thursday when they travel to take on Hartford in a 7 p.m. kickoff under the lights.