Men’s Soccer Wins Two

Jaime Heilbron

 

Last weekend, the Colgate men’s soccer team once again came out on the winners’ side, defeating the University of Vermont Catamounts 1-0 and the University of New Hampshire Wildcats 2-1. Senior co-captain Steven Miller scored late in the game to defeat Vermont, while both Miller and se­nior co-captain Mike Reese produced tal­lies to defeat New Hampshire. Colgate now boasts a 4-0-1 record in the young season.

“Our overall team defending has been pretty solid and the guys are all on the same page,” Reese said. “The team is really enjoying competing and even though not everything has gone perfectly, we’ve stuck together and grinded out some results early in the season.”

On Friday September 9, the Raiders par­ticipated in their first away game of the year, taking on the Catamounts. Colgate began the first half similarly to how they had the previous contests, controlling possession of the ball and dominating the game, as well as proposing more offensively. Despite all of this, as has happened in most contests so far this season, the Raiders were unable to get on the scoreboard, despite outshooting Vermont 5-3 in the frame, three of which were stopped by the Catamount goalkeeper.

In the second half, it was Vermont who took the initiative, taking the game Col­gate’s end and putting pressure on junior goalkeeper Grant Reed. The Catamounts took a total of seven shots in the second half, to the Raiders’ two but only one of them was directed towards the goal and Reed caught that one. Vermont’s lack of shots on net was due in great part to ‘Gate’s great defensive play, which has been out­standing in the early going of the cam­paign. Colgate, on the other hand, two shots on goal in the half. Only one was enough, however, as Miller scored off an assist from first-year Jimmy McLaughlin in the 88th minute to lift the Raiders to a 1-0 victory over the hosts.

“One characteristic of all good teams is being able to win close games,” Reese said. “We have been fortunate enough to pull out some exciting wins early in the year, and it’s great to get that experience under our belts early in the season so that we are better prepared for Patriot League games and the Patriot League Tournament, which always seem to be decided by one goal.”

Two days later, on September 11, Colgate took on the New Hampshire Wild­cats to finish its participation in the Ver­mont Tournament. The Raiders once again came out to a strong first half, forcing the Wildcats into their own zone for the ma­jority of the frame and outshooting them throughout the first 45 minutes of play. Miller scored his second goal of the tourna­ment almost 19 minutes into the game to give Colgate the lead, after being set up for a point-blank one-timer by juniors Shane Conlin and Mike Reidy, who combined to create the play. New Hampshire, however, drew even soon after when at the 21st min­ute David Schlatter headed a free kick past Reed. The Raiders continued handling play throughout the rest of the frame, but were unable to retake the lead.

In the second half, it was once again the opponents who took the initiative, al­though Colgate did not let itself be com­pletely dominated, which resulted in an en­tertaining back and forth game, especially once the Raiders retook the lead at the 51st minute, when Reese scored a header off a free kick. Colgate’s second tally forced the Wildcats to seek the tying goal and in doing so, left spaces open for the Raiders to exploit, but ‘Gate was unable to do it with much success. New Hampshire kept trying to find a second goal, while Colgate sought a more comfortable lead, yet neither team found what it was looking for, thus the game ended in a 2-1 victory for the Raiders. Given that ‘Gate won the tournament, it came as no surprise when Miller was elected as the Offensive M.V.P. and Reese as the Defensive M.V.P. Junior goalkeeper Grant Reed and first-year midfielder Jimmy McLaughlin were also included among the All-Tournament selections.

“Any time you go on the road, it is tough to get a win,” Reese said. “We have a lot of road games this year and being able to beat two qual­ity opponents on the road this weekend was a great step forward for us and it is something we can build off of going into the rest of the season.”

This upcoming weekend, Colgate will co-host the CU Classic with Cornell. The Raiders will take on Hofstra tomorrow and Long Island University on Sunday.

“Hofstra and LIU will be two tough chal­lenges at home,” Reese said. “I think continu­ing to get better every day in practice will be key this week. We can improve on both sides of the ball and next weekend provides a great opportunity for us to bring it all together be­fore heading into the Patriot League schedule. A big crowd always helps us too, so hopefully we will get a lot of student support as we try to keep it rolling.”

Friday’s contest is slated for a 7 p.m. start, while Sunday’s will begin at noon.

Contact Jaime Heilbron at [email protected]