The loss brings a close to the Monks' record-setting season while the Mammoths advance to the third round of the national tournament for the ninth-consecutive season. Amherst will face conference-rival Tufts University in the round of 16 next Saturday.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Amherst grabbed an early lead on a fluky goal at the 6:24 mark, when senior midfielder Fikayo Ajayi (London, U.K.) scored off a German Giammattei (Pinecrest, Fla.) feed. The lead pass looked to cross the end line near the right post, but the senior kept playing and ricocheted a shot off an SJC defender into the goal.
The Mammoths doubled their advantage six minutes later when Sebastian Derby (San Pedro Garza Garcia, Mexico) scored off a corner kick delivered by Ajayi. The kick into the box was perfectly placed, allowing Derby to redirect the feed into the right corner.
Ajayi netted his second goal of the half at the 24:44 mark when he capitalized on a rebound following a diving stop by senior keeper Blake Mullen (Manchester, Conn.).
Despite the three-goal deficit the Monks continued to fight and the effort paid off when freshman Kuma Onyejose (East Greenwich, R.I.) hit pay dirt off a Dalton Gaumer (Corona, Calif.) pass with 4:33 left in the first frame. Onyejose scored his fifth goal of the season with a well-placed shot into the bottom right corner after receiving a 50-yard pass from his senior teammate.
Junior Jackson Taylor (Gorham, Maine) cut the Monks' deficit to 3-2 off a direct kick taken from the top left of the box at the 50:34 mark. Taylor's third goal of the year cleared a wall of Amherst defenders and landed inside the far right post.
Threatening once again with 37:20 on the clock, Noah Elmore (Berlin, Vt.) nearly deadlocked the contest as he drilled a shot towards frame from 30 yards out, however the attempt sailed a foot high off target.
The Monks' comeback hopes took a blow with 24:18 left when Felix Wu (Bethesda, Md.) volleyed in a shot off an Ajayi free kick.
Mullen made seven saves and thwarted a handful of set pieces in the losing effort while Amherst netminder Bernie White (Austin, Texas) turned away five shots in a winning performance.
The Mammoths held slight advantages in shots (18-14) and shots on goal (11-7) while both teams were awarded a pair of corner kicks on the afternoon.
- The loss brings an end to the Monks' 42-game undefeated streak – the fifth longest in NCAA DIII Men's Soccer history and longest such streak since Messiah's string of the same number ended in 2010
- Prior to this afternoon, the Monks had not yielded as many as four goals since falling to UMass.-Boston by a 4-0 score on October 7th, 2014 (80 games ago)
With the loss, Saint Joseph's falls to 0-3 all-time versus Amherst College, a team the Monks last played on September 19th, 2010.
Today's setback signals the end of collegiate soccer for the Monks' eight seniors: Gaumer, Mullen, Mitchell Cyr (Rochester, N.H.), Brett Mattos (Mahopac, N.Y.), Jesse Ramirez (Dumont, N.J.), Nicholas Seta (Hampton, N.H.), James Stevens (Marshfield, Mass.), and Rory Twomey (South Windsor, Conn.). The first recruiting class for Head Coach Adrian Dubois has helped the Monks post an incredible 66-10-9 (.777) overall record, including a 33-3-2 (.868) mark in conference play, with three GNAC Championships over the last four seasons.
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, visitwww.sjcme.edu.