On a cool, crisp Saturday during Family Weekend, MIT defeated the Coast Guard Academy 2-0 in an exhilarating soccer match at Steinbrenner Stadium. The Engineers earned their first win in the conference, improving their NEWMAC record to 1-3-0 and their overall record to 6-6-0. The Bears, tough competitors for the Engineers, saw their record decline to 1-3-1 in the conference and to 4-7-1 overall. The Engineers started off this season well with a 4-0 winning streak and then suddenly lost their drive and fell to a 0-6 losing streak. This game was essential for the Engineers, as it was a must-win for them to move on to the conference tournament.
MIT started off with high energy and maintained it throughout the entire game. Midfielder Matthew A. Monheit ’14 made the first scoring attempt after just five minutes and eventually succeeded after about 20 minutes, following a 30-yard pass from midfielder Jonathan K. Tebes ’14.
The Engineers’ great offense continued and then widened the lead to 2-0 only 8 minutes after the first goal. Dynamically, forward Zachary E. Kabelac ’12 cut past two defenders and found an opening to make the unassisted shot when Coast Guard goalie Will Leffler was caught off-guard.
The Coast Guard Academy struggled to put up a goal throughout the end of first half and almost succeeded following a shot attempt by Tradd Lovern, who was called offsides.
MIT’s defense was a vital asset in this game. Goalkeeper Samuel G. Cannon ’15 blocked the first shot on goal of the game by the Bears’ Brett Godiksen. The possession of the ball quickly went back and forth throughout the last half, as the Engineers almost scored on an attempt by Tebes, which was blocked by Leffler. During the fast-paced battle of the last few minutes, the Bears made one final shot attempt, but Cannon saved it.
MIT took 15 shots total, while the Coast Guard took only 4. However, the Coast Guard had 6 saves, while MIT had 2, both by Cannon, who ensured that the Bears did not end the great shutout. This game, Cannon’s first career start, boasted a more spirited, confident Engineers team that was definitely inspired by the massive crowd support. Cannon said, “We had a lot of fans today and had a good start. It was a must-win game, and we put it together. We had to step it up and did so.”
The Engineers will attempt to keep up their renewed energy when they next play at Clark University in a NEWMAC game on Oct. 22 at 11:30 a.m.