Men's Soccer Falls At Williams
October 24, 2012
The Middlebury men's soccer team dropped its final game of the regular season, falling 3-1 at ninth-ranked Williams (12-0-2, 8-0-2). The Panthers 6-6-1, 3-6-1) have earned a spot in the upcoming NESCAC Tournament and will play a quarterfinal game on the road Saturday.
Seconds into the game, Patrick Ebobisse nearly helped put the Ephs on the board when he made a strong run down the right sideline and sent a cross into the box that narrowly eluded everyone and rolled wide. 20 minutes later, it was again Ebobisse who nearly created a goal when he sprang Matt Muralles free inside the 18-yard-box. Muralles' shot was on target, but a charging Zach Abdu-Glass successfully cut down the angle and made a sprawling kick save to keep the Ephs off the board.
Williams continued to press and in the 27th minute they finally broke through. A stretch of consistent Eph possession ultimately left Chris Seitz with the ball at his feet and some space to work with. Seitz instead chose to send a curling cross into the box from about 25 yards out, where it was met by none other than the head of Matt Ratajczak, who nodded the ball past a diving Abdu-Glass and into the side netting for his second goal of the year and a 1-0 Williams lead.
The Panthers nearly knotted things up in the 37th minute when Jon Portman hit a rising shot from long range that Eph keeper Than Finan just barely managed to tip away for a corner kick.
In the game's 61st minute, Middlebury's Adam Batista made a run deep into Williams territory and sent a low cross into the box, where an oncoming Harper Williams volleyed it into the back of the net for his third goal of the season to tie the game at 1-1.
After collecting a loose ball in the top corner of the 18 on the left side, User Kushaina calmly cut back towards the middle and took one, two, three touches before unleashing a rocket that beat Abdu-Glass on the far post in the 63rd minute for the 2-1 lead.
The lead grew to 3-1 in the 80th minute when Mohommad Rashid scored on a rebound after a shot from Michael Madding was saved.
Middlebury outshot Williams 12-11 on the day with three saves from Abdu-Glass and one from Finan.