SWARTHMORE, Pa. - A pair of goals in the first 15 minutes of play was more than enough for the No. 4 Swarthmore College men's soccer team as the Garnet (4-0) cruised past local rival Widener 2-0 on Wednesday evening from Clothier Field Stadium.
Junior Kieran Reichert scored his first goal of the 2011 season in the 11th minute of play on a long-distance strike after he collected a loose ball off a Fabian Castro free kick that blasted the Widener wall. Castro got into the scoring act himself just three minutes later, when he converted in traffic from in front of the net thanks to a perfect setup from senior Micah Rose.
Senior captain David D'Annunzio made one save to pick up his second-consecutive shutout. The shutout was the 24th of D'Annunzio's career, placing him just one shy of the program record (Andrew Cavenagh '92 25).
With the win, Swarthmore takes a 3-1 advantage over Widener in the 3rd Annual "320 Challenge" with only cross country events remaining for the Fall season.
Swat finished the game with only three shots on goal, but certainly made the most of its opportunities. In the 11th minute, Castro earned a free kick after he was taken down just outside the box. On the ensuing free kick, Castro blasted a shot right into the Widener wall, sending the ball soaring to the left wing. Waiting unmarked to the left was Reichert, who took the loose ball and quickly buried the ball into the bottom left corner of the net to make it 1-0 Swarthmore.
Still on the attack, the Garnet got another score just three minutes later. Following a corner kick, Rose laced a pass through several Widener defenders into the center of the box to find Castro, whose quick shot beat the defense and the Pride keeper to make a 2-0 game in just 14 minutes into the match.
With the help of the Garnet defense limiting the Pride to just three shots and none on goal for the half, Swarthmore held its 2-0 lead through halftime.
In the second 45, Swarthmore continued to dominate the play, seeing several excellent scoring chances - highlighted by freshman Michael Stewart drilling the post in the 86th minute - despite not adding to the lead. With the help of a suffocating defensive effort that held the Pride without a second-half shot, the Garnet finished off the 2-0 win.
Swarthmore ended the game with significant advantages in shots (18-3), shots on goal (3-1) and corners (7-4).
Swarthmore returns to action on Saturday when it opens Centennial Conference play at home against No. 25 Franklin & Marshall. Play is set to begin at 4:00 p.m.