While the rest of the University enjoyed some well-deserved time off, the Binghamton men’s soccer team took to the field in Manhattan in a match against Columbia on Monday. The Bearcats (1-4-1) looked to capture a second victory this season, but were put off by stiff competition from the Lions (2-1-1), losing the match 0-3.
Last week, Binghamton was able to record a tie and a victory against Monmouth and Lehigh, respectively. The match against Monmouth proved a nail-biter that ended in a double overtime shutout on both sides. Contributing greatly to the team’s success was redshirt junior goalkeeper Chris Shutler, who remained in goal for the duration of the match, racking up seven saves against the Nighthawks.
Against the Lehigh Mountain Hawks, the Bearcats were down early before they made a comeback in the second half. Originally tied at 1-1, freshman midfielder Andrew McDonnell put the Bearcats ahead 2-1 on a corner kick from sophomore midfielder Noah Luescher. The goal proved to be a monumental moment not only for the team, which took home its first victory of the season, but also for McDonnell, as the goal was the first of his collegiate career.
“I thought we were playing quite well in the last few matches on the road,” said BU head coach Paul Marco. “We go down to Columbia and we just didn’t execute and play to our strengths. We didn’t do the things we had done in the previous two games, and Columbia’s a good team, and they punished us for our mistakes.”
The Bearcats, with Shutler in goal, were able to hold off Columbia longer than they held off Cornell and Drexel in previous matches, as the Lions did not net a goal until almost 24 minutes into regulation.
BU was unable to counter Columbia’s first goal, and instead, the Lions rifled another shot in the net just 14 minutes later. Both freshman forward Kostas Nika and graduate student midfielder Florian Orth launched shots in response to this second goal before the half ended, but neither resulted in any scores for the Bearcats.
Coming into the second half, sophomore forward Jack Muller took the reins and posted two shots for the Bearcats. His efforts proved futile, however, and minutes later, Columbia scored its third goal of the game.
Despite numerous shot attempts from the Bearcats for the remainder of regulation play, the team failed to put the ball in the cage and lost without a score on the board. Columbia walked off the field as victors, taking the match, 3-0.
“I thought that, going into the game, I thought we could cause them some problems in certain areas,” Marco said. “At times we did, I just don’t think we did enough in the game. We have become a team who is more happy possessing the soccer ball than trying to score goals. If we can just solve that one little problem, I think that we’ll be less playing on our end, we’ll create less chaos for us and more chaos for the opponent.”
Looking to earn its second win of the season, the men’s soccer team will take on Colgate University in its first home game in two weeks on Friday, Sept. 14. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. from the Bearcats Sports Complex in Vestal, New York.