Leonard's Two Goals Lead Yale Past Quinnipiac

Leonard's Two Goals Lead Yale Past Quinnipiac

Sept. 23, 2008

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HAMDEN, Conn. - With a number of players out with nagging injuries or illness, the Yale men's soccer team needed someone to step up in Tuesday's game with Quinnipiac. Senior Liam Leonard was happy to oblige. Leonard scored a pair of goals as the Bulldogs extended their unbeaten streak to three with a 2-0 victory before a crowd of 576 at Bobcat Field.

"We always talk about the game turning on moments," said Yale head coach Brian Tompkins. "Liam came off the bench and took advantage of two moments. His experience really showed."

The Bulldogs (3-2-1) were without a number of key players, including Brad Rose, Eric Meyer, Tyler Guse and Andy Hackbarth.

Leonard got Yale on the board at 22:29 when he settled a Charlie Neil pass and fired a low shot into the right corner of the goal. Nearly 11 minutes later, Leonard struck again. This one was set up by Justin Song, who dribbled down the right side and sent a cross into the box that Leonard headed home.

Yale goalkeeper Travis Chulick and a defense anchored by Markus Jackson and Alex Guzinski didn't allow the Bobcats (3-1-2) back in the game. Chulick finished with three saves. His best stop came when he deflected away Durval Pereira's hard shot from the right wing late in the second half.

The Bulldogs also benefited from some good fortune. Graciano Brito's blast from 20 yards out midway through the first half bounced straight down off the crossbar and was cleared away by a Yale defender. The Bobcats also hit the crossbar in the first minute of the second half. This time it was Rodrigo Uchoa's header that was denied.

"I thought Travis made a couple of big saves," Tompkins said. "Quinnipiac really threw the kitchen sink at us in the second half. They have a couple of dangerous forwards, but our defense soaked up a lot."

The Bobcats outshot Yale 16-13 and had a 4-3 edge in corner kicks.

"This was a good win for us," Tompkins said. "Quinnipiac is a good team. To defeat an unbeaten team on the road is a big accomplishment."

The Bulldogs are back in action on Saturday when they host Fairfield at 4 p.m. at Reese Stadium.

Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity