No one likes to settle, but three out of six ain’t bad.
Unable to respond to a 38th-minute Albany goal on Wednesday night, the Binghamton men’s soccer team will carry the three seed into the America East Tournament this weekend. BU (5-13-0, 3-4-0 AE) is set to host No. 6 Stony Brook at 6 p.m. Saturday at the Bearcats Sports Complex.
“We were picked seventh [in the preseason poll] — we got the third seed in the tournament, fourth overall in the conference,” senior back Jamie Forbes said of the team’s exceeding external expectations this season. “So we’re happy with that, but we don’t want to settle. We’re going to keep going as far as we can.”
BU’s 1-0 loss on Wednesday was decided by Albany freshman forward Alfonso Pinheiro’s long-range go-ahead goal that snuck inside the right post.
That slim margin fits the season better than the team’s offensive break-out performance on Saturday, in which the Bearcats blew out Stony Brook (4-13-1, 2-5 AE), 5-1.
Fifteen of Binghamton’s 18 games to date have been decided by one goal, 12 of them featuring just that single goal. Even against Stony Brook, the score was tied at 1-1 until the second half. Three of BU’s goals came in the last 10 minutes.
“We were getting chances, but we didn’t get goals and then they just created a few more opportunities for themselves,” BU head coach Paul Marco said. “They were taking very good positions during the run of play, which allowed us to create perhaps a better look at goal. But all year we’ve been making some really good chances. We’ve been hitting the post and the crossbar, and Saturday night they just went in.”
While the end result was a rout, a second victory over the Seawolves is by no means guaranteed.
“The challenge for us is, it might have been 5-1 at the end of the game, but for long spells of the game, it was a 1-1 game,” Marco said. “So I think it’ll be a tight game on Saturday. We need to be sharp, we need to be focused, our attitude needs to be right to start, I think our effort in the game will be great. And then it’ll just come down to our concentration in front of goal. Both goals.”
“Everything that happened up to this point is over with and done,” graduate student midfielder Tommy Moon said. “So now all we can do is take each match one by one and then go from there.”
Saturday’s tournament contest will be the first the Bearcats have hosted since 2010. The AE determined prices for admission, with regularly priced tickets costing $8, youth tickets (14 and younger) $5 and tickets for students from any America East school available for $2 with a valid student ID. However, the Binghamton Athletic Department will cover the cost of the tickets of any BU undergraduate students. These students must scan their University IDs at the gate of the Bearcats Sports Complex.