Nittany Lions notch shut-out win over Cannoneers

Keeper Brandon Yocum punts the ball
Keeper Brandon Yocum punts the ball

Hazleton, Pa. - The Nittany Lions picked up their first win of the season on Sunday in their home opener as they took on the Cannoneers of Pratt Instiitute. Playing under the direction of new Head Coach John Witkowski, the Lions won the time of possession battle to keep Pratt off the scoreboard for a 1-0 shut-out win. Sophomore Moussa Diouf (Carteret, Nj.) tallied the game's lone score early in the first half coming off a free kick by senior Steven Principe (Jim Thorpe, Pa.) in the 14th minute of play. Seventy-five minutes and several close calls later, Hazleton would close the books on Pratt and find their way to the win column.

Moments that Mattered

Control the Tempo

Despite just one score on the day, Hazleton dictated the pace of play all afternoon. The Lions out-shot Pratt by a ratio of 3:1, totaling 24 shots in the game including an 11-2 margin in the first half. Hazleton might have easily tacked on several insurance scores if not for a fine effort by Pratt's Bubby Vernon who stymied several quality looks by the Hazleton offense and notched eights saves in the contest.

Clean Sheet for Yocum

Hazleton net-minder, sophomore Brandon Yocum (Bloomsburg, Pa.) faced little resistance in the first half but all that changed in the final frame. Yocum made a pair of key saves on Cannoneer header attempts late in the action and successfully directed traffic on a Pratt indirect kick attempt that came just 30 feet from the goal to keep a clean sheet and earn the shut-out win.

Next Up

Hazleton will look to keep the ball rolling in their next two non-league contests before Penn State University Athletic Conference action kicks off. The Nittany Lions will next take the field on Thursday, September 14 when they travel to Williamson College of the Trades for a 6:30 p.m. kick-off under the lights.