Nicole Moore, Guest Writer
Manhattan College used its senior day energy to take down No. 2 Marist 3-1 last Saturday.
It was the last game at Gaelic Park for six of Manhattan’s seniors, who came out ready in the face of its lower standing in the MAAC — — and its loss to Marist last season.
Jorden Scott, Manhattan head soccer coach, said seeing the seniors play at Gaelic one final time believes he will lament the loss of them for more than just their playing abilities.
“They’re like your kids,” he said. “I’ve seen them grow for four years now, and they’re going to leave us as men and prepared for life.”
Alex Shackley, senior co-captain, said the win felt amazing considering all the team has done to earn it.
“We worked so hard for four years,” he said. “We’ve really created a family here.”
Shackley was the one who started the scoring for Manhattan, which took an early lead in the 18th minute of play thanks to his goal. He also extended the lead later with another goal off of a corner kick from Dahrius Waldron. Luke Greaves headed the ball into the box where Shackley finished it off with another header with four minutes remaining in the first half.
Marist was down 2-0, but Manhattan did not let up the pressure.
The third goal was scored by senior Brandon Alvarado in the 61st minute after stealing the ball from the Marist defense in the box. This marked Alvarado’s first collegiate goal.
“It was a good feeling to score,” he said, “but it was a better feeling to see everyone be so happy together and finally realize that if we put enough work in we can get results.”
The good feelings were not shared by Marist players, as tensions mounted between them and the officials. Words were exchanged between a Marist player and the sideline judge over his lack of an offside call. He subsequently earned a yellow card a few minutes later for a rough play.
This gave Shackley another goal scoring opportunity on a free kick a few feet outside the box, which sailed just over top of the goal.
Marist managed its lone goal when Zachary Reed scored within the last two minutes.
The loss knocked Marist down to the No. 4 seed in the conference. For Manhattan, the win moves it into a tie for No. 8 with Canisius, which it will face this upcoming Saturday. But perhaps more importantly, the win boosts the team momentum to finish off the season.
“We finally got some goals today,” Shackley said, “so hopefully we can carry that into the last few games and then into the playoffs. Hopefully we’re peaking at the right time.”
Along with Shackley and Alvarado, Abraham Bartoah; Josh Binfield; Alex Recinos; and Robert Maffei are also graduating in the spring.
“We’re going to miss having them around,” Scott said, “and certain things about their game that you’re going to miss on the team, but it’s the personalities we’re going to miss more than anything.”