In a back and forth game that saw a lot of drama, the Queens College Men’s Soccer team fell to the Lions of Molloy College 5-4 in the ECC opener for both teams of the 2017-18 season.
The game began with both teams going at each other, and getting solid scoring chances early on, including sophomore forward Emgi Gousse having multiple shots on goal that did not get by Molloy’s goalie Raul Bonilla.
The scoreless tie was finally broken at around the 14th minute of the game when Molloy senior midfielder Adam Carnwath scored to put Molloy up 1-0.
The next 25 minutes of game time saw the Knights attempt to tie the game while coming close multiple times. They nearly evened the score with just under nine minutes to go with a corner kick to a header that went in but was negated when a yellow card was given to Emgi Gousse.
Finally at the 39:35 mark the Knights’ hard work paid off as they tied the game when junior defender Paul Hayes scored off an assist from fellow defender David Ramirez to tie the score at 1-1.
It seemed that we were going into the half with a tie game but with 20 seconds left Molloy’s Daniel Massey got by an unsuspecting Knights defense and scored on goalie Robert Retnauer to give Molloy a 2-1 lead going into halftime.
Coming out of the break we saw multiple changes including Knights coach, Frank Vertullo, replacing goalie Retnauer with the junior Chidiebere Iloka to play the rest of the game.
The team cranked up their aggression on offense, bringing the ball up the field multiple times with solid scoring chances but were unable to get clean looks by Molloy’s Bonilla.
Once again persistence paid off as András Breuer drew a penalty shot and sunk it past Bonilla to tie the game up at 2-2 with well over 34 mins left to play.
However, just as the Knights seemed to be hitting their strides, the Lions took over.
The next 12 mins saw the Lions score three goals pass Iloka, the last two coming from Adam Carnwath, whose hat trick put Molloy up 5-2 with just under 23 minutes left in the game.
The rest of the game seemed like a formality as the Lions tried to play smart and just run the clock out but the Knights proved once again that they would not go down easily.
With about 10 minutes left to play, Gousse scored on a free kick to cut the Knights’ deficit to two goals. Then with just under two minutes to play, junior midfielder Najib Ullah scored and the Knights saw themselves down by only one goal.
That would be the last score of the rally as the Lions were able to hold off the Knights’ late comeback attempt to secure the victory in the ECC opening game.
Despite the loss, a lot of positives could be taken out of this game. The Knights were able to get four goals by Molloy’s goalie who had seven shutouts last season.
This loss will not hinder how the team feels moving forward. Coach Vertullo gave some insight on how he prepares the team for each game. “We walk into every game 0-0, each game is its own task” he said. “I’ve seen in them (the players) the confidence that they can win.”
The loss might be tough to take now but with that mindset moving forward expect the team to continue to make strides this year as they work to make it to the playoffs.