The only thing the Springfield College Men’s Soccer team needed in the past few games was a little luck. After dominating Western New England and Keene State in their previous two matches, they walked away from the field on the losing end despite outplaying and out shooting their opponents.
In Saturday afternoon’s match against Mitchell College, the Pride finally found their luck at the feet of sophomore midfielder Kevin Nowak and junior midfielder Scott Saucier. The two late goals lead Springfield to their first win of the year by a score of 2-0. The game took place at Brock Affleck field on the campus of Springfield College.
For the duration of the game, it seemed as if Springfield was constantly playing on Mitchell’s half of the field. Countless scoring opportunities were turned away by Mariner goalkeeper Ramazan Sinani who made 13 saves.
Springfield had an early opportunity to take the lead with 19:55 left in the first half. Sophomore Joe Labella was taken down by a Mitchell defender inside the box giving the Pride a penalty kick. Senior captain David Chessen was given the shot and missed wide left.
“After missing a penalty kick most players put their head down but David picked his play up from there on out and had an outstanding game today,” said Coach Steffen Seibert of his captain.
After 82 minutes of play, the Pride finally busted through the brick wall. With 7:31 left in the game Freshman Austin Vico sent the ball high into the box from the wing only to find junior Mike Fowler rise above his defender and head the ball off the crossbar. The rebound landed at Nowak’s feet.
“We do a lot of second ball drills,” said the 6-foot-tall, athletically built midfielder from Plainsboro, New Jersey. “When the ball came in I got in the right spot, the ball fell and I took one touch and kind of hit it towards the goal.”
As soon as the ball entered the cage, the Pride’s bench erupted in applause as Springfield finally broke their scoring drought.
“They weren’t falling in the past two games but they finally fell today which was nice,” said Siebert.
With just 2:12 left in the match, Pinkerton Academy product Scott Saucier picked up a loose ball in the box and stung the top right corner of the net squashing Mitchell’s hopes of a comeback.
“I thought it was pretty typical so far in how we have played this season,” said Siebert. “I am again excited and proud of the boys and the result was just different today.”
The Pride will try to continue their success with a home game against Wesleyan Tuesday night at 7:00 p.m.
Editor’s Note: Senior Alex Reilly and sophomore Ryan Malone were injured during the course of the game. Jon will have an update on these injuries as it comes to light later this week.