STANDISH, Maine – Thomas College (2-2-0) edged Saint Joseph's College (2-3-1), 2-1, in a non-conference men's soccer contest at Westerlea Way Field on Thursday afternoon. Senior goalkeeper Scott Benner (Post Falls, Idaho) made five saves in the losing effort.
Thomas held a 1-0 lead until the 53rd minute when freshman Brett Mattos (Mahopac, N.Y.) netted his second goal of the season off an Austin Bell (Gorham, Maine) pass. The in-state rivals played fairly even in the second stanza as the match seemed destined for extra play before sophomore William Nilson (Vaxholm, Sweden) tapped in the game-winner at the 85:44 mark.
Taking advantage of a defensive lapse in the box, the Terriers opened the game scoring in the 18th minute on a play set up by senior midfielder Tre Ming (Devonshire, Bermuda), who collected a loose ball near midfield and sent it into the heart of the box. After an unlucky bounce, the ball found the foot of freshman forward Josh Emard (Lebanon, Maine), who ran in on the left and drove a shot into the right corner.
The 1-0 advantage remained until the 53rd minute, when Bell and Mattos connected to knot the game at 1-1. Running down the right side and into the corner, Bell fought off several defenders and dealt a perfect crossing pass to Mattos, who was stationed near the left post and tapped the ball in past diving junior keeper Joakim Sternas (Stockholm, Sweden).
Both teams had opportunities to take the lead but neither would do so until the 86th minute when Nilson collected a high bouncing ball near the top of the box and placed a kick to the left side of the net for the game-winner.
Thomas held a 13-9 lead in shots while Saint Joseph's owned a 3-1 advantage in corner kicks on the afternoon. Sternas made six saves for the Terriers.
Saint Joseph's will host GNAC-rival Rivier University this Saturday at 3:00 PM while Thomas returns to the pitch with a game at Bates College at 2:00 PM on Saturday.
BEYOND THE BOX
- With the loss, Saint Joseph's falls to 13-9-3 all-time versus Thomas College
- The Terriers have now topped the Monks in three-consecutive meetings – all one-goal decisions – for the first time since Thomas tipped St. Joe's in four-straight meetings from 1990 to 1993
- Saint Joseph's is 7-2-1 in the history of the series with Rivier University and has defeated the Raiders in seven-consecutive meetings dating back to the 2008 campaign
- Five of the Monks' seven wins over the Raiders have been of the shutout variety, including last season's 1-0 SJC win in Nashua, N.H.
Saint Joseph's College is Maine's only Catholic liberal arts college, providing a supportive, personalized and career-focused education for more than 100 years. From its 474-acre campus on the shores of Sebago Lake, the College offers more than 40 undergraduate programs to a population of approximately 1,000 students. Saint Joseph's College Online provides certificates, undergraduate and advanced degrees for working adults through an online learning program. For more, visit www.sjcme.edu.