by MOHSIN AHMED, Copy Editor
Even after 11 games this season, the excitement that comes with each new match has yet to diminish for the Manhattan College men’s soccer team.
After a 1-0 loss to the Saint Peter’s Peacocks on Sept. 29, the Manhattan Jaspers bounced back with a 1-0 victory on Oct. 3 against the Siena Saints at Gaelic Park. The win helped the Jaspers improve their record at the time to 2-1 in MAAC play and 9-2, overall.
Sophomore forward Brandon Joseph-Buadi helped clinch the victory with his team-leading fifth goal of the season on an assist by Berti Fourrier, another sophomore forward. While Marcellin Gohier, the reigning 2017 MAAC Goalkeeper of the Year, was not out there, sophomore goalkeeper Micheal Kennedy made three saves to frustrate Siena’s efforts in trying to break through MC’s unbelievable defense.
“We asked the next guy to step up and the next guy was ready,” coach Jorden Scott said about Kennedy in a postgame interview with Go Jaspers. “He spent the last nine months preparing, he put the time in in the summer and he came out with some really good saves tonight.”
The theme of the game quickly dissolved into close shaves by both teams. The game began with junior captain Tristan Doran maintaining a strong defensive play to run through a Siena forward, and force him out-of-bounds, for the first of several unsuccessful goal attempts. By the eighteenth minute, junior midfielder Milan Devuyst unleashed the first of four shots, only to be blocked by a Siena defender.
The first save of the night was by Siena goalkeeper, Greg Monroe, who caught it in his hands as Fourrier slammed a 25-yard free kick all the way from the middle of the field. Halfway through the game, egged on by a screaming coach, the Siena Saints slowly began to take control of the field. However, their efforts were consistently overcome by Doran, freshman midfielder Thomas Hitchins and junior forward Noah Amissah. The highlight of the first half was Kennedy’s first save in the 34th minute when he knocked the ball above the crossbar when jumping for it.
Neither team scored in the first half although the Siena Saints came close as they managed a goal to no effect as the buzzer for the end of the first half sounded through the field.
The second half was fraught with frustration. Manhattan College was given four yellow cards and it was not until the fifty-seventh minute that Joseph-Buadi managed to overwhelm Monroe to score the only goal of the game. Prior to his goal, Joseph-Buadi attempted twice to break through Monroe’s defense, but to no avail.
Kennedy managed to keep Siena scoreless in the second half by blocking yet another goal by leaping in the air. Fifteen minutes into the second half, the Jaspers made a total of five shots and three corners. What followed were several more failed goal attempts by both sides, several more extraordinary saves by Kennedy and Monroe and the sound of the buzzer which signaled another win for the Jaspers.
By the end, the game was one for the books. Each team played to its full potential and this was made more apparent by the collected statistics. MC had an unbelievable 17 shots to Siena’s eight, six shots on goal to Siena’s three, 11 corner kicks to Siena’s six and a goal to assuage the work of all their effort. It was their willingness to work together as a team that finally won them the match. The unified energy that accompanies the Jaspers has yet to falter.
“These guys put the work in,” coach Scott said in the interview with Go Jaspers. “They deserve all the accolades. Just a great reaction and hopefully now we can get back on a run again.”
The Manhattan Jaspers were supported by an attendance of 150 fans. For another riveting match, you can show your Jasper pride at their next home game at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 10 at Gaelic Park.