O-State men roll into SUNYAC title game

Benjamin Patton | The Daily StarOneonta State’s Cory Santangelo, left, collides with Geneseo’s Chris Kanaval during Wednesday’s SUNY Athletic Conference semifinal at O-State’s Red Dragon Field. O-State won, 4-0, and will host second-seeded Cortland in the SUNYAC final at 1 p.m. Saturday.

ONEONTA — So often during Wednesday’s first half it almost looked scripted.

The passes were so crisp, the movement so purposeful, the opportunities so promising.

The resulting 4-0 victory seemed fitting as Oneonta State’s men cruised into the SUNY Athletic Conference soccer final against an overmatched squad from Geneseo.

‘‘They moved off the ball extremely well today,’’ said Geneseo coach Dominic Oliveri, whose team dropped to 11-8-2. ‘‘They’re the class of the conference for a reason.’’

O-State will take a 17-0-2 record into Saturday’s conference final against rival Cortland. There’s a reason the Red Dragons haven’t lost in 19 games this season — they’re very good.

On a comfortable fall afternoon, O-State displayed its balance and skill. The team’s 13 shots came from nine players, the 11 shots on goal were taken by eight players and all four of its goals were assisted.

‘‘This was a big jump for us,’’ O-State sophomore Hans Purtell said of his team’s dominance. ‘‘It’s giving us some confidence going forward to the final.’’

Purtell gave the Red Dragons a 1-0 lead 4 minutes, 18 seconds into play. Matthew Matteo played a pass to Purtell on the right side. Purtell touched it twice to beat a defender and then scored to the near post from inside the box.

‘‘It set the tone for the game,’’ Oneonta State head coach Iain Byrne said of his team’s first goal.

Midway through the first half, Colin Volpe made it 2-0. Volpe sent a crossing pass in the direction of freshman Cory Santangelo in a crowded box. The ball then deflected off a Geneseo defender and into the left side of the goal.

O-State’s third goal came 14 minutes later and again involved Volpe. He sent a crossing pass into the box that Dylan Williams finished inside the right post.

Purtell capped the scoring late in the second half with his eighth of the season. He finished to the far post after receiving a pass from Alex Winiarski.

Vincent Pellegrino made three saves as the Red Dragons earned their fifth consecutive shutout and 13th shutout on the season.

O-State, which had a 13-5 advantage in shots, defeated Geneseo for the second time this season, the first a 2-1 road victory Oct. 4.

On Saturday, the Red Dragons will attempt to win their first conference title since winning back-to-back crowns in 2011 and 2012.

O-State and Cortland played to a 2-2 tie Sept. 27 at Oneonta.

‘‘It will be a good game to watch,’’ Byrne said. ‘‘Hopefully it lives up to the billing of the conference final.’’

Cortland (14-3-1) defeated third-seeded Brockport, 1-0 in Wednesday’s other semifinal by scoring with 25 seconds remaining in the first overtime. Cortland is making its second straight finals appearance. It lost, 2-1, to Plattsburgh in the 2013 SUNYAC final.

Oneonta 4, Geneseo 0


Geneseo 0 0 - 0

Oneonta 3 1 - 4

5-Geneseo (11-8-2): None.

1-Oneonta (17-0-2): Hans Purtell 2-0, Colin Volpe 1-1, Dylan Williams 1-0, Matthew Matteo 0-1, Alex Winiarski 0-1.

Shots-corner kicks: G 5-2; O 13-5.

Goalies: Logan Calvey (G) 7; Vincent Pellegrino (O) 3.

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