By River Mitchell
It was a beautiful Saturday afternoon in Western Massachusetts, as the Springfield College Pride took on the Clark University Cougars in men’s soccer at Brock-Affleck Field. The Pride entered the game looking to capitalize on playing a Clark team with a less than desirable 2-12-1 record, with the Pride having had struggles of their own over the season, posting a 2-9-2 record. They were able to capitalize, however, beating the Cougars 4-1 on senior day.
Outside of the start of the second half, where it seemed like Clark was getting a little momentum, Springfield dominated the game in all aspects from start to finish. Clark didn’t get a single shot off until there was 14:05 left in the first half, as the defense played a huge role throughout the course of the game.
There was also a lot of help from senior goalie Clay Knibbs, as he was credited with five saves on the game and only let one ball into the net. The Pride took 20 shots compared to the Cougars 17.
The game didn’t see its first goal until there was only 10:39 left in the first half, which was scored by first-year Parker Thornton. The goal was assisted by grad student Jack Rosenberg, as this made the small crowd on hand erupt. The goal was immediately followed up by another goal, this one scored by Rosenberg and assisted by first-year Nick Parakilas.
The Cougars did manage to get on the board before the half was over, as first-year Luke Sheldon put one in to cut the score in half, 2-1, heading into the break.
The second half came around and outside of a brief momentum surge the Cougars had, the Pride would kill that very quickly as two more goals would be scored. Sophomore Matthew Mela put one into the net, as well as Parakilas adding a goal of his own a bit later.
“I felt as a team, we played really well,” Parakilas said. “We had those moments where we were all together, we got the ball, played well.”
For Parakilas, he also takes a lot of pride in being able to contribute to the team’s success.
“Contributing feels great, you know?”
As for Thornton, he was also very happy with the outcome.
“As a team we just seemed to have fun. We were all playing together as a unit, it was just a fun game,” he said.
Head coach Tommy Crabill was very happy with the outcome as well, as he really admired the hard work that his team put on the field.
“We played well,” Crabill said. “Battled from the start to the finish and stayed organized, stayed focused, and I’m really proud of them.”
Photo Courtesy of Danielle Schmelling/The Student