In a match that pit two of the CUNYAC’s top undefeated teams, it was home Baruch College that came out victorious, as they took a wild, 4-3, win over the College of Staten Island in men’s soccer action this evening at Randall’s Island.  After winning eight straight, the Dolphins have dropped their last two and fell to 8-3 overall and 3-1 in the CUNYAC, while the Bearcats lifted their marks to 6-2, 4-0, respectively.

Both teams came in confident knowing how they had played within the CUNYAC thus far and the two teams sparred back-and-forth getting good looks on both ends.

Still, it was Baruch that saw the better of play from in-close, and a terrific first half but CSI on the ropes.  Just 3:43 into the game, a foul in the box on the Dolphins, one of only three in the first half committed by CSI, put the ball on the penalty spot, and BC’s Jacob Gorodetsky buried it past CSI keeper Ivan Barreraserao to stake the home squad to a 1-0 advantage.

Play tempered from there, and even though CSI attacked in waves, in the 22nd minute Baruch capitalized.  After a CSI turnover, Macdara Heanue raced in on the flank and sent a sterling cross to John Favara, who buried it in at close range to give Baruch a commanding 2-0 edge.

The Dolphins ramped up the offensive pressure, but Baruch used their counterattack wisely and with just three minutes to go in until halftime, Dortion Alipaj received a through-ball from Alexey Arefev and tucked it into the left of goal to offer the Bearcats a 3-0 edge.  Despite being out-shot, 8-4, Baruch had an outstanding, 3-0, lead at intermission.

CSI needed a spark to get back in the game, and they started the second half at a frenetic pace.  It sent Baruch’s defenders reeling at times and after a few big opportunities, CSI finally capitalized in the 50th minute.  There Adrian Cosovic was sprung loose at midfield and dribbled 30 yards up the field before landing a cross into the box for Omer Abdella, who struck the twine to make it 3-1, his third goal of the year.

CSI now had momentum, and just 4:15 later, another CSI win in the midfield sprung Dardan Nika loose on a run.  He would find an open Alex Sosa in the box that the freshman powered home past BC keeper Victor Torres, and now less than 10 minutes into the second stanza, CSI was now only down 3-2.

The Dolphins continued to press and get their chances, including a pair of free kicks from about 30 yards away and a pair of corners, but they could not register, seeing a series of shots failing high and wide.

With CSI putting numbers up front into the attack, Baruch countered with a Jaime Zurro goal, assisted by Cormac Foley, taking advantage of insufficient numbers on the CSI back line.  The goal was scored with just seven minutes remaining.

Down seemingly to their last gasp, CSI took advantage.  In the 85th minute, the Dolphins sent a flurry of activity in front of the Baruch goal.  An Abdella cross was sent to the far post left to right, but the Baruch defense, in an attempt to clear the ball out, knocked a deflection into their own net, making it a 4-3 game with just five minutes remaining.

Unfortunately, CSI would simply run out of time, despite getting a few more rushes up the field in the closing moments.  

CSI would finish with a 14-7 edge in shots (7-6 on goal) and held a 5-2 edge in corners attempted.  Baruch committed 23 fouls to CSI’s 16.  There were a total of seven bookings in the game, all yellows.  For CSI, Barreraserao was booked along with Cosovic, Vasyl Fedortsi, and Miguel Morales, and for Baruch, they were tagged with yellow’s for Heanue, Bryan Nunez and goalkeeper Torres, for a delay of game.

Now on a two-game skid, the Dolphins will look to stop the bleeding against Brooklyn College on the road on Saturday at 12 Noon.  The Bulldogs fell to John Jay tonight, 2-1.