The Queens College men’s soccer team (2-1-2) started their conference schedule at home on Thursday with a scoreless draw against St. Thomas Aquinas.
The crowd sat at the edge of their seats during an overtime consisting of two 10 minute halves, as both teams struggled to put the ball in the back of the net.
The men battled hard against a strong STAC team and maintained a competitive defense against some dangerous players.
Starting junior defender Grant Edick was missing from Thursday’s game due to a suspension resulting from a red card he received in the previous non-conference game against St. Anselm. Edick smacked the ball out of the net in an amazing, last-minute save against a shot that would have secured a win for St. Anselm. But there was one problem — Edick was not the goalie.
“You got to do what you got to do,” said Edick. “I would sacrifice myself for my team any day.”
The Knights goalkeeper, freshman Sean Geoghegan, commanded his area well and took some pressure off of the defense.
Geoghegan remained a stable force against a dangerous throw-in strategy by STAC. The biggest challenge for the Knights was defending these throws — that presented nearly the same level of threat as a corner kick — which were placed dangerously inside the 18-yard box. This strategy added to STAC’s very direct style of play.
The Knights’ counterattack began with solid defense from freshman Gianpaolo Lisena in the middle and Scott Cain on the right who gave an offensive push from the back line. Sophomore Scott Lamont and freshman Glen Reid controlled the center both offensively and defensively.
Freshman Paul Sandoval and junior Jose Lopez created good opportunities for themselves in front of the net, including a combination between Reid, Sandoval and Lopez that almost resulted in a goal in the 38th minute of the game.
The referees were generous with yellow cards on both sides of the field including a yellow card given to graduate student Eric Clermont in his attempts to block a dangerous throw in the defensive half. Yellow cards were also given to STAC for language in the conference’s attempts to control swearing on the field and promote sportsmanship.
Although the match ended in a draw, the result was not negative for the Knights.
“It was a hard fought team battle,” Cain said. “Any time you play for 110 minutes it takes a lot out of you.”