Men’s soccer makes a comeback
By: David Otero
Regulation time could not hold C.W. Post Men’s soccer team. After three consecutive double overtime matches, the team now holds a 2-4-1 record and are undefeated in East Coast Conference play.
The September 18th game against Millersville University ended in a scoreless tie after two overtime periods. Their next game against American International College on September 22nd also ended in double overtime but not even goals from Joakim Ohlson and Rumen Kerekov could hold the lead as AIC took the game with seven minutes remaining.
“We had a tough beginning,” stated Kerkov. “We started with a couple of losses. Since then everybody has worked hard to get out of this situation and from my point of view the team is now on the right track.”
And it showed. Going into their next game versus East Coast Conference rival NYIT, the Pioneers knew it was a big game and they needed to come away with a win. “We are taking one game at a time,” said senior forward Rumen Kerekov. “But our next game is against NYIT and we need to win it at all costs.”
In their first ECC game of the year, C.W. Post got off to a quick start as freshman back Joakim Ohlson scored a goal early in the first period with the assist coming from junior forward Niclas Dahlin. Trailing by one and with only few minutes remaining in the game, sophomore forward Betim Bajrami received a pass from Ohlson that tied the game at two.
After the first overtime session went scoreless, Bajrami ended the game by hitting the back of the net off a breakaway, handing C.W. Post the dramatic 3-2 double OT victory.
“We had to win this game in order to preserve any chances for NCAA,” said Kerekov. “We dominated the game completely, but we were down 1-2 until the 88th minute. Then we were able to tie the game and eventually we won in overtime. It was a great battle, we played very well and we deserved to win.”
After four successive road games, the Pioneers are finally back home to take on Saint Anselm College who is 1-5-1 for the year (1-3-1 ECC). C.W. Post’s has only played one game at home, which they won 2-0.
This week’s schedule has in-conference games against rivals University of Bridgeport (4-3) and Dowling College (4-1-2). Goalkeeper and Captain Ed Shone said the mission remains the same, back to back ECC titles and an NCAA bid, something Men’s Soccer has never done. “Since we are ranked number one in the ECC, everyone is out to beat us,” explained Shone. “If everyone can have the same collective goal, and work as hard as they can towards it, then results and performances will follow.”