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Canisius men’s soccer blanks Niagara to earn first MAAC victory

CANISIUS COLLEGE ATHLETICS

BRady_Troy action vs QU 9_26_18
NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. -- Junior Troy Brady scored twice to pace Canisius to a 4-0 victory over rival Niagara in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference men's soccer action Wednesday at Niagara Field.
 
Senior Melvin Blair and sophomore Manuele Cavazzoli also found the back of the net for the Golden Griffins, who improved to 3-6-1 overall and 1-3-0 in MAAC play with the shutout victory over their "Battle of the Bridge" rivals. The Purple Eagles slipped to 3-10-0 on the season and 1-5-0 in conference action with the setback.
 
Brady staked Canisius to a 1-0 lead in the 40th minute, taking a pass from Cavazzoli at the top of the box and working his way to the right side before sliding the ball past Niagara keeper Steve Casey and inside the left post.
 
Brady doubled the Griffs lead to 2-0 at the 59:40 mark of the contest, collecting a feed from sophomore Filippo Tamburini from just outside the box and blasting a ball that Casey was able to get a piece of, but could not keep from finding its way into the net.
 
Blair made it a 3-0 contest in the 67th minute. Senior Hunter Walsh began the sequence, heading the ball to a wide-open Blair in the middle of the box. Blair made the most of the opportunity, blasting the ball into the upper left-hand corner of the net for his third of the campaign.
 
Cavazzoli closed out the scoring just 94 seconds later, tapping home a feed from Walsh to finish off a 2-on-0 opportunity and make it a 4-0 contest.
 
Sophomore Tom Crosbie made his first career start in goal for Canisius and made one save to record his first career shutout.
 
Head Coach Dermot McGrane's Postgame Comments
"We got a few guys back from injury today and it made a huge difference to our team. I thought we had a very good performance as we finally looked like the team I expected to see at the start of the season.
 
"We have to take the momentum from this game and carry into Saturday's game against Monmouth."
 
Game Notes
• Wednesday's contest served as the 59th meeting between Canisius and Niagara
• Canisius stretched its current undefeated streak against Niagara to five with its victory on Wednesday (3-0-2)
• Canisius held a 14-7 advantage over Niagara in shots attempted and a 5-4 edge in corner kicks taken.
•  Brady increased his team lead in both points (11) and goals (5) with his two-goal effort on Wednesday. He tallied multiple goals in a game for the second time this season and the third in his career
• Cavazzoli's second-half goal was his first collegiate tally. Cavazzoli also finished with multiple points in a game for the first time in his career with his three-point outing
• Walsh tallied multiple assists in a game for the first time in his career with his two-assist effort on Wednesday
• Senior Mo Kretschmer made his first start for the Griffs since Nov. 11, 2016  
 
Up Next
• Canisius travels to West Long Branch, N.J., Saturday for a MAAC contest against Monmouth.
• Opening kickoff for the Griffs and the Hawks is set for 7 p.m. at Hesse Field.