St. John’s soccer suffers first Big East loss to Providence

St. John’s soccer falls at home to Providence in its first defeat of Big East play. 

On Wednesday night at Belson Stadium, the St. John’s soccer team suffered a heartbreaking 1-0 loss in double overtime to No. 25 Providence.

It is the second straight win for the Friars over the Red Storm at Belson Stadium with the previous meeting being a 2-1 Providence win back on November 13, 2019 in the Big East Tournament Semifinals.

The most frustrating part about the game was that the Johnnies were controlling the possession and play for the entire match and had some good chances to score.

It was clear that Providence’s plan was to sit deep and absorb pressure from St. John’s and when an opportunity came they would launch a counterattack with the speed they had with their wingers.

It almost worked early on in the 4th minute, but Luka Gavran made the save from point-blank range from forward Gevork Diarbian to keep the Friars off the board.

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The Red Storm had plenty of possession in the first half but didn’t have too many chances that seriously threatened the Friar goal.

However, coming out of the halftime break the Johnnies started to create a lot more threatening chances, most which can be attributed to the introduction of Jared Juleau who did not start in the game.

Juleau was a breath of fresh air in the second half on that left-hand side of the attack as he was allowed to push further forward as Brandon Knapp was played in the left-back role.

The junior from Stamford, Connecticut was getting in some good service into the box, engineered good combination plays, and a little bit of flair like this:

In the 53rd minute, Juleau had the Red Storm’s best chance of the night as he stole the ball away from the Providence defense but his shot on the breakaway hit the side netting.

The Red Storm continued to push to open the scoring and it was Juleau who once again came really close to doing so in the 72nd minute.

Juleau turned on the fancy feet once again and fired a low shot to the left but Providence goalie Lukas Burns made a fantastic save to deny the junior defender.

Providence had a couple of opportunities on the counter-attack in the second half but wasn’t able to put one away. As close as the Johnnies came, they just couldn’t finish off a chance and the match headed to overtime.

St. John’s soccer gets stifled in extra time

St. John’s would not have a shot from the 75th minute on and in extra time, the Friars turned up the pressure.

Just two minutes into double overtime, Providence would earn a corner kick, and the corner was driven into the net with a header from midfielder Paulo Lima.

The St. John’s defense is always tough, but this season the set-piece defending has been shaky at times resulting in nervy moments in the box or good chances in on goal for the opponent.

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This time it hurt the Red Storm as it cost them this game.

The loss moves St. John’s to 7-3-1 (2-1-1 Big East) on the season and ends the Red Storm’s seven-game unbeaten run while the Friars move to 7-1-2 (3-0-1 Big East).

St. John’s has to pick itself up quickly as the schedule does not get any easier as next up for the Johnnies is a trip to Villanova on Saturday at 1:00pm EST on the Big East Digital Network on FloSports before defending Big East Champions Seton Hall comes to Queens on October 16.

The last time St. John’s faced off against Villanova, the Wildcats came away from Belson Stadium with a 1-0 overtime win on March 6th in this past spring 2021 season.