Fourth Annual Connor Senn Memorial Match raises nearly $12,000 despite storms
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Thunderstorms in the Columbus area forced an early end to the Fourth Annual Connor Senn Memorial Match Wednesday night, but not before the Ohio State men's soccer team and The Columbus Crew raised $11,750, making the 2005 edition of the game, which supports the Connor Senn Memorial Scholarship Fund, the most successful in the event's history.
A crowd of 1,222 watched Ohio State and The Crew battle to a 0-0 tie at halftime, but with three minutes remaining in the intermission, lightning and heavy rain around Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium caused both teams to agree to suspend the match. The crowd, which was second in size only to the 1,388 that watched the First Annual Connor Senn Memorial Match in 2002, helped raise the record dollar amount.
"The game is really secondary to what the event is all about," John Bluem, Ohio State head coach, said. "I hope the first half was entertaining for the crowd. I would like to thank the Crew for honoring the memory of Connor."
Connor Senn, a freshman member of the 2001 Ohio State soccer team, collapsed during the second half of OSU's match at the University of Akron Sept. 26, 2001, and died later that night due to a congenital heart defect. Dr. Lance Senn, Connor's father and former member of the Ohio State tennis team, started the Connor Senn Memorial Scholarship Fund. The fund grows through gifts from friends and family of Connor, as well as through proceeds from the annual Connor Senn Memorial Match, which, each spring, pits the Buckeyes against the Columbus Crew of Major League Soccer. A silent auction, along with private and corporate sponsors, continues to add to the success of the event.
High School students Deanna Dobos of Lakewood High School in Hebron, Ohio, and Philip Saslaw of Worthington Kilbourne were the recipients of this year's "Connor Senn Achievement Award for drive, determination and spirit," announced at the game Wednesday night.
The Crew outshot the Buckeyes 13-1 in the first half, with Ohio State junior goalkeeper Ray Burse Jr. collecting two saves. Dante Washington had four of The Crew's shots, while Manny Lagos had three and former Buckeye Sammy Tamporello had two. All three players had one shot on goal.
Ohio State's Kevin Nugent, who scored a goal against The Crew in the previous two Connor Senn Memorial Matches, had the lone Buckeye shot, which was on goal and saved by Crew goalkeeper Bill Gaudette.