Canisius Wins Shortened Game Over St. Bonaventure, 2-1
ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. – Canisius College (1-5) picked up its first win of the season with a shortened 2-1 decision over Little Three rival St. Bonaventure (3-4) Friday afternoon at McGraw-Jennings Field.
With 19:37 remaining in the game, St. Bona head coach Mel Mahler was issued a yellow card and then a subsequent red card, resulting in his ejection from the contest. There was no assistant coach listed on the official roster which is presented to the officials prior to the game. Because there was no assistant coach listed to replace Mahler, the officials called the game and awarded the win to Canisius.
Because at least 70 minutes had been played, the game is ruled a suspended game which counts as a completed, official game, and all individual and team statistics count.
"I just want to apologize to the players, fans and University for putting our program in this situation," Mahler said. "As I reflect back on the situation, I deeply regret having taken an opportunity away from our players to finish the match and give them every chance to find a way to win."
Down 1-0 entering the second half, the Golden Griffs evened the score with a beautiful free kick piece off the foot off Gavin Falconer in the 56th minute. The junior forward bent the ball over the wall and into the top left corner of the net from just outside the top of the box for his first goal of the season.
Canisius then took the lead not even a minute later as Sam Zarka tallied his first score of the season. A deflected ball off the foot of Andrea Conte found Zarka, who lofted the ball into the center of an open net.
The Bonnies put Canisius on the offensive chase early as sophomore James Reed tallied his league-leading fourth goal of the campaign in the 23rd minute. Dribbling down the left side of the pitch, Reed maneuvered around the right back before using the outside of his right foot to stick the ball past a charging goalkeeper and just inside the right post.
Canisius' keeper Kareem Gray stopped three shots en route to earning his first win of the year. On the other side, Mitchell Mack – who was questionable entering the game – made one stop.
St. Bonaventure is scheduled to return to action on Sunday at 1 p.m. when it travels to Saint Francis (Pa.). Because of the red card, Mahler is suspended from coaching that contest.
Game Notes: The chippy contest was evenly played as Canisius attempted 15 shots – three on target – while the Bonnies attempted 10 – four of which were on frame … Bonaventure was whistled for 13 fouls while Canisius was called for 11 … three yellow cards were issued to St. Bonaventure players, while Canisius received one.