PRINCETON, N.J.--The Penn men's soccer team remained perfect on the season, shutting out its fourth consecutive opponent Sunday.Four ties the program record for consecutive shutouts first set in 1972. Senior Omid Shokoufandeh scored the only goal of the game on a penalty kick at 23:26 to beat American, 1-0.
Today was a challenge with the heat and the second game in three days," said Head Coach RudyFuller."I thought American was a very challenging team to play against for a variety of reasons. But once again, the boys found a way to get a result."
A sweltering day proved difficult for both teams, but with a deep bench, Penn was able to sub eight players on and keep pace in the hot weather. Among those subs were three players--Eric Guo, Thomas Brandt and Alex Takakuwa--making their debut in the Red and Blue while senior Josh Baugh saw his first minutes of the season.
Midway through the first half, both teams found their footing and started making larger plays on the ball, but save a penalty kick for Penn, both teams' opportunities were thwarted.
The penalty kick for Penn was awarded in the 23rd minute.Newcomer Christian Barreiro was fouled in the box amidst a scrambleafter a corner kick.Shokoufandeh lined up for the shot scored.
The later part of the second half showed a motivated American team surging on offense, but Penn's defensive efforts kept the Eagles at bay.
The bulkof the game was in the midfield, where senior Brian Mascarenhas and sophomore Aaron Ross helped lead Penn's possession andquiet American's attempts on attack.
"It was a battle for us throughout the game, particularly in the midfield," said Fuller. "I thought Mascarenhas and Ross were particularlywere good today."
Senior goalkeeper Drew Healy marked his fourth clean sheet with four saves andhas now registered 380 minutes perfect in goal.
AU's keeper Matt Makowski had three saves and the AU defense was credited with one as well.
The Quakers earned its second tournament title with two wins at the Princeton Invitational. The team hosts the Penn Soccer Classic Sept. 19-21 to open the home slate at Rhodes Field. First up is Buffalo, Friday at 7:30 p.m., followed by Mercer on Sunday at 1 p.m. The fourth team in the tournament is Temple who will host its game, at the Ambler (Pa.)Sport Complex.