Amherst comes out on top in second overtime in men’s soccer slugfest
AMHERST, Mass. — Senior Joe Gannon notched two goals, including the game-winner on a penalty kick with four seconds remaining in second overtime, to lead the Amherst College men’s soccer team to a 2-1 victory over Bates College on Sunday afternoon in the first round of NESCAC Tournament play.
Amherst (8-4-3, 5-3-2) will face second-seeded Middlebury in the NESCAC semifinals Saturday at Williams College. Top-seeded Williams will host No. 7 Wesleyan, a surprise 4-1 winner over No. 2 Bowdoin on Sunday, in the other semifinal.
Bates (9-4-2, 4-4-2) junior midfielder Ithai Schori (New York, N.Y.) scored his second goal of the season, and his second in as many days, to even the game at 1-1 in the 33rd minute of the game, after Gannon had scored unassisted in the sixth minute. Sophomore Brent Morin (Hanover, N.H.) assisted Schori on the score, feeding him on a breakaway.
The game was clearly a physical one: Bates was whistled for 25 fouls to Amherst’s 16, and the Bobcats drew three yellow cards to Amherst’s two.
It all came to a head with four seconds left to play in the second overtime, with a Bates foul in the penalty box. Gannon’s kick beat Bates goaltender Aaron Schleicher (Londonderry, N.H.) to end the game.
Schleicher had six saves in nearly 110 minutes of play, including a stop of Ryan O’Donnell’s penalty shot during regulation time, while Amherst’s Jeff Grover had four. Amherst outshot Bates 18-15.
The game marked the first time Bates and Amherst have faced each other in the NESCAC playoffs.