Despite a great effort, men’s soccer (6–2–1, 3–2–1 in the NESCAC) was not quite prepared for the challenge against Conn. College as Williams fell 2–1 on Saturday.
Head Coach Erin Sullivan ’96 remained confident in his team and maintained a positive attitude .
“There has been an attention to detail and an ‘every moment matters’ approach from our leaders that has spurred us through some of the more demanding practices and games,” Sullivan siad. “We believe this will continue, but the sport has a way of testing your humility and resolve, both as an individual and as a team, and that is something that great teams are the master of – always learning, always yearning for a higher achievement, never getting ahead of themselves.
“It’s one of the most exciting aspects of coaching and in particular, here at Williams, where the standard of excellence is so high in the classroom, the playing fields and the community. We know how difficult it is to sustain that level over the course of an entire season and so we remain focused on the present, our next opponent, and the process of making the most of every opportunity before us,” Sullivan said.
Unlike in their past few games games, the Ephs had a quick and strong start as forward Mohammed Rashid ’17 broke through the Camels’ defense and made an assist to his partner, Malcolm Singleton ’18, who chipped in the ball on the far post to give the Ephs an early first-half lead. The team had high hopes of bringing home the win by the end of the five-minute mark. The remainder of the first half, however, was a battle for possession of the ball with both teams struggling to prevent a steal from the other side. Although the game remained scoreless, both teams were sharp, keeping the audience in suspense through effective ground balls and crafty dribbling. The 31st minute marked a turning point when an Eph foul in the box resulted in a penalty kick for the Camels.
As midfielder Pat Devlin approached the ball that laid motionless 12 yards away from the goal, the Ephs watched anxiously as tri-captain goalie Christian Alcorn ’17 failed to block the ball that bounced off the corner and into the net. Before the halftime mark, the match was tied and both teams were left trying to pinpoint the opponent’s weak points.
The Ephs showed off their offense in the second half, managing to penetrate the Camels’ five-man defensive formation, but failed multiple times to finish off the goal. In the 82nd minute, Camel forward Christian Murphy made his way to the right side of the pitch on a breakaway and fired a surprise shot. Alcorn deflected this, but the rebound landed in front of forward Chris Lockwood, who forced himself through the Ephs’ barrier and, without hesitation, fired the ball towards the far post and in.
The Ephs found themselves in multiple situations where the path was clear to make straight shots, but Camels goalie Mark Cameron deflected all of them and prevented the Ephs from claiming the victory.
Williams returned to the road yesterday in a non-conference matchup against Skidmore. Results came in too late to report.