No. 3 Akron proved too much for Penn State as the Zips handed the Nittany Lions their second home loss of the season with a 2-0 triumph on Wednesday night.
Akron (8-1-2) took advantage of two first-half scoring chances and turned back Penn State (6-4-2) in the second half. The Zips ended the night with a 12-10 shot advantage and a 7-1 lead in corner kicks. Penn State goalkeeper Emmanuel Martin had three saves.
A pair of frequent scorers lifted Akron to the win. Reinaldo Brenes received a feed from Eric Stevenson near midfield and peeled away from the defense to beat Martin to his right and give the Zips the lead. Scott Caldwell then converted on a penalty kick 14 minutes later to extend the margin. The goals were the players’ sixth and seventh of the season, respectively.
Neither team’s attack threatened much in the second frame. Both squads posted a shot on goal, but the period was marked by midfield play. Penn State’s John Gallagher sent a free kick from 30 yards out through both teams and a few feet left of the post in the 67th minute. Three minutes later Eli Dennis put a header just high of the crossbar.
Penn State resumes Big Ten play by hosting Michigan State at 3 p.m. Sunday. The Lions then wrap up their three-game homestand Oct. 17 against Bucknell.