STANDISH, Maine – Saint Joseph's College (14-1-3, 9-0-2 GNAC) toppled Anna Maria College (4-16-0, 1-10-0 GNAC), 4-0, in what was the 2019 Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) men's soccer season finale for both teams at the SJC Athletics Complex on Wednesday evening.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
Saint Joseph's wasted little time getting on the board, as freshman Niko DeCola (Mahopac, N.Y.) netted his fourth goal of the season off an Austin Ward (North Andover, Mass.) pass just 3:23 after the opening whistle.
The 1-0 edge remained until early in the second half when the Monks hit pay dirt twice in a matter of five minutes to claim a 3-0 cushion. Sophomore Jason Umbehr (Wallingford, Conn.) potted his fifth tally of the season off a Keenan Welzel (Brunswick, Maine) pass at the 51:40 mark and Ward and tacked on his seventh of the year, with DeCola notching the assist, in the 57th minute.
The scoring ledger was closed out in the 79th minute when the AMCATS scored an own goal. Looking to dish the ball back to junior goalkeeper Jeffre Donahue (Rockland, Mass.), an Anna Maria defender failed to catch his netminder's attention before doing so, as the pass wound up in the back of the net.
Saint Joseph's maintained possession for most of the game and held the lead in shots (39-1), shots on goal (17-0), and corner kicks (14-0) in the victory.
SJC junior starter David Walbridge (Hampden, Mass.) logged nearly 69 minutes and freshman Tomás Griffin (Belmont, Mass.) served just over 21 minutes in goal – neither faced a shot in the shutout triumph.
Donahue made 13 saves in a losing effort for the AMCATS.
Saint Joseph's is now 9-0-0 all-time versus Anna Maria College and has outscored the AMCATS by a 28-1 margin in the nine matchups combined. The Monks have defeated the AMCATS by the same 4-0 score in five-consecutive meetings.
Saint Joseph's has earned the #2 seed in the GNAC Tournament and will host a quarterfinal contest on Saturday at 3:00 PM, opponent TBD.