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RMU Sentry Media

The news site of Robert Morris University

RMU Sentry Media

The news site of Robert Morris University

RMU Sentry Media

First Half Blitz Enough to See Colonials Past Fort Wayne

Samantha Dutch
Anass Hadran scored one of the three goals in the shutout win over Purdue Fort Wayne

MOON TOWNSHIP– “It’s a great win for the program.” That’s how men’s soccer Head Coach Jonathan Potter closed out his interview after a 3-0 win against Purdue Fort Wayne Saturday afternoon. First-half goals scored by Anass Hadran, John Paul Mbuthia, and Gabe Norris saw the Colonials beat a Fort Wayne side that was placed first in the section, even if they had to do it with 10 men.

The Colonials came out hot. As soon as the whistle blew, Coach Potter could be heard asking his team “Can we get in behind?”

“We have some quick, dynamic guys that are good one-on-one and we really wanted to be aggressive today to score,” Potter explained.

And score they did. Three of the starting front four linked up just two minutes in, with Kai Mcloughlin crossing the ball in, leading to Chase Gilley flicking it on to Anass Hadran, who let it fall before volleying it into the bottom corner.

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“I practiced for these things,” Hadran said. “Then my team, we’d do specific work, like individuals in free times, cause I like to be successful with these balls because I play attacking midfielder so I have to be attacking more to help the other attackers to score, to assist, as much as possible.”

The Mastodons looked lost and unable to handle a pounding Colonial offense. The constant pressing led to RMU’s second goal and Chase Gilley’s second assist, winning the ball back deep and laying it off to striker, John Paul Mbuthia, who thrashed it into the near post.

But it wouldn’t end there. After a nice ball roll by McLoughlin, Hadran picked the ball up, and, after a small slip, laid it off Captain Gabe Norris, who curled it perfectly around the keeper into the bottom corner.

RMU didn’t let off the gas.

Fort Wayne struggled to cope with the Colonials confident midfield, and chances came and went for them throughout the closing minutes of the first half. Potter almost saw his team get their fourth after captain and center-half William Dodzi Afawubo put a corner at the keeper and Chase Gilley saw his rebound snuffed out. Another chance came when McLoughlin and Hadran linked up again, with the duo beating two men before McLoughlin fired in a cross that Mbuthia put just wide.

“Everyone gives their best for this team, and I hope the next [performance] will be better, and we go far, as much as possible, in this league,” Hadran commented while speaking on the danger he, Gilley, McLoughlin, and Mbuthia posed, with Kosi Udeh helping as well up top.

“It was coming for a lot of those guys over the past few games,” Potter said. “And they got rewarded for it with the goals.”

Purdue Fort Wayne rose to the challenge the three-goal deficit posed and came out quickly in the second half. While they garnered no real chances immediately, the threat was there.

“We got contributions from a lot of guys in that second half to help keep that clean sheet.” Potter praised.

But after a great day for the team and himself personally, Chase Gilley did not contribute in the latter stages, getting himself sent off with a red card fifteen minutes into the half. This resulted from a couple of chippy moments prior, with players and coaches calling for fouls and cards.

“It was tough,” Coach Potter said, playing down a man. “Our team needs to play with an edge, but obviously we gotta keep cool heads in those key moments.”

The win sees Robert Morris enter fifth place in the Horizon League standings. Purdue Fort Wayne however, drops into second with the loss.

“If you score three goals, in good ways, like good goals, shows there’s great work from the coach, from the players, from all the staff to keep going to give the best to make the team [be] in the best place,” Hadran commented.

“I just couldn’t be prouder of the team,” Coach Potter added.

Robert Morris looks to keep the momentum rolling when they play Saturday, Oct. 7 at Wright State.

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