Balance Attack Gets Men's Soccer Back on the Winning Track

Francesco Valaguss - WPI Men's Soccer

WORCESTER -- A handful of season firsts boost the WPI soccer team to a 5-0 victory over Roger Williams on Tuesday night. The Engineers earn their fourth shutout of the season with the win.  

WPI (4-2-1) was led by four scorers who all netted their first goals of the season, including one who was making his first appearance of the season. Michael Magalhaes (East Freetown, MA), Francesco Valagussa (Arlington, MA), Walter Rodriguez (Bayamon, PR), and Filippo Marcantoni (Ponti sul Mincio, Italy) each got their first goal of the season in the victory.  

John Padavano (Flemington, NJ) faced a lot of action on the night making six saves on 11 shots faced, though the Engineers took 22 shots altogether. Ryan Martin (Douglas, MA) minded the net for the first half for WPI while Roe Hendrick (Nashua, NH) stepped in in relief in the second, as the duo combined for the shut out.  

It took less than two minutes for the Engineers to get on the board. From the starting whistle, WPI raced down the field with Anthony Previte (Andover, MA) firing off the first shot of the game right at Padavano who made the initial save. But Magalhaes was in the right place at the right time, scooping up the rebound from the middle of the box and firing it into the back of the goal for his first goal of the season. 

Despite a couple of attempts by Roger Williams, it was WPI that that added another goal to the total in the 22nd minute of action when Evan Hallberg (Glocester, RI) sent a long pass up across midfield into the box where Valagussa stayed perfectly onsides, reeling in the pass and poking it past Padavano who was coming out to try and cut it off for his first tally of 2021.  

A trio of goals late into the game sealed the shutout victory for the Engineers. First, Rodriguez reigned in a rebound the bounced off the crossbar, chipping it over the head of the Hawks' netminder in the 64th minute. Rodriguez' score was followed by a goal in the 83rd minute of action by Matthew McLellan (Hopedale, MA). McLellan chipped a shot past Padavano, who's teammate tried to boot the shot out of the net, but the ball had already crossed the end line for the score, his second goal of the year. 

Marcantoni solidified the victory with a goal in the 89th minute of play, sending a cross from the left side of the field into the right side of the net for the exclamation point of the game.  

WPI head out on the road for the first time in three weeks when they head to Norton, MA for a Saturday afternoon meeting with Wheaton on Sept. 25 at 2pm while Roger Williams will continue on the road at Curry on Friday afternoon at 4pm.