September 24, 2012

Bowdoin sophomore Andrew Gray came off the bench to score the game-winning goal with 10:01 remaining as the Polar Bears earned a 1-0 road win at Middlebury on Saturday afternoon. Both teams traded plays in the midfield in the opening half, with the best chance coming for Middlebury in the 28th minute when a string of nice passes brought the ball to the foot of junior Sam Peisch (Still River, Mass.), who played a nice cross to the direction of sophomore Noah Goss-Woliner (Waitsfield, Vt.). Bowdoin goaltender Will Wise made a diving break-up, however, to keep the game scoreless into intermission.

Bowdoin's best chances all came in the second half, starting in the 57th minute when Andrew Jones struck a low, hard shot that sailed through the defense but skipped just wide. The Polar Bears again came close in the 76th minute as an Eddie Jones strike soared just over the cross bar.

Middlebury had a tremendous chance to take the lead with 12 minutes to go as a corner kick came to rookie Deklan Robinson (Hamilton, Mass.), who lobbed a shot towards the net. Jones, a forward, cleared the ball off the goal line to preserve the tie and set the stage for Gray's game-winner.

The Polar Bears finally put one home with just over 10 minutes to go as Eric Goitia played a free kick into the box. The ball rattled around until coming to the foot of Andrew Gray, who ripped a shot that was deflected by senior Zach Abdu-Glass (Lexington, Mass.) but rolled into the net for the go-ahead goal.

Wise was credited with one save for Bowdoin, who held a 5-3 advantage in shots. Abdu-Glass did not make a save for Middlebury.

Middlebury dropped its second game in as many days, falling to third-ranked Amherst 2-0 at home on Sunday.

Amherst had a great opportunity in the 10th minute when Max Fikke broke in all alone after the Panther defense thought they had drawn him offside. Fikke’s shot went wide and the game remained scoreless.

The Jeffs got on the board at the 38:24 mark, when Julien Aoyama crossed the ball from the right side before Jae Heo delivered a header into the back of the net.

Amherst looked to increase its lead in the 59th minute when Spencer Noon found Milton Rico with a crossing pass, but his quick shot on goal hit the crossbar.

Middlebury answered with a pair of corners in the 63rd and 68th minutes, but could not earn the equalizer.

Amherst gained a comfortable 2-0 advantage at the 81:56 mark, as Noon hit James Mooney with a crossing pass, as his shot deflected in off a Middlebury defender.

Amherst finished with a 9-2 advantage in shots, with the intense battle showing 18 Amherst fouls and 13 on the Panthers.

Thomas Bull was forced to make no saves to earn the shutout, while Abdu-Glass made three stops for Middlebury.

• Men’s soccer record: 3-3

• Up next: 9/29 @ Wesleyan