KINGS POINT, N.Y. (Sept. 15, 2016) – Junior Jon Tarbox (Gettysburg, Pa.) recorded his first career hat trick on Thursday night to lead the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy men's soccer team over Yeshiva, 5-0, in the Mariners' first Skyline Conference game of the season. The victory was USMMA's first of the year and improves its record to 1-2-2 (1-0-0 Skyline), while the Maccabees fall to 1-5-1 (1-3-1 Skyline) in defeat.
"It was nice for us to find the back of the net a few times after struggling to score early in the season," commented head coach Michael Smolens. "Coach Fitzgerald, Coach Cochrane and I were pleased with the way we played in the first half. Even though we could only get one past their goalkeeper, we didn't get frustrated and continued to play wel and it finally paid off in a big way in the second half. It's a good way to start off our conference season and we need to continue this type of play as the season moves forward.
After both teams traded good chances in the first 18 minutes of the game, stopped by clutch saves by both goalkeepers – senior Cory Maier (Hampton, Va.) for Merchant Marine and junior Maor Feinstein for YU – Tarbox tallied the first goal of the game in the 19th minute. He was led on a through ball by classmate Brian Nickel (North Canton, Ohio) and fired a shot past Feinstein.
Tarbox's second tally came late in the opening half when he headed in a ball down low off of a corner kick by senior David Burkhardt (Cutchogue, N.Y.). The Mariners outshot Yeshiva, 18-2, in the first half and Maier ended the frame with one save, while Feinstien made 7 for the Macs.
The hat trick goal came in the 73rd minute, as he rifled a shot into the top right corner from the above the top of the 18-yard box. Junior Hannes Rogers (Weinheim, Germany) was credited with the assist on the tally.
The Mariners added two late insurance goals. Senior Gavin Yingling (Salisbury, Md.) tallied his second of the season in the 81st minute, assisted by senior Michael Heckmuller (Cypress, Calif.), before a pair of plebes had a hand in the final goal of the night – freshman Alex Madonna (Gibsonia, Pa.) was led up the right side of the field by classmate Patrick McLaughlin (Allentown, Pa.) and blasted a shot from way out into the bottom right corner of the net for his first career goal.
Overall on the night, the Mariners outshot the Maccabees, 42-3. Maier made two saves in over 80 minutes of action, and was replaced by junior Nolan Smith (Stafford, Va.) with under 10 minutes remaining. Smith didn't face a shot. Feinstein had 17 saves for the Macs in nearly 89 minutes.
Up next, Merchant Marine will host Skyline rival SUNY Maritime this Saturday, Sept. 17, on Family Day. Opening kickoff is slated for 1 p.m. at Brooks Stadium. Live stats and a live video feed of the game will be available with links on the USMMA Men's Soccer Schedule Page.
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