The men’s soccer team secured the UAA championship and remained undefeated after tying Case Western Reserve 0–0 in Cleveland on Friday and defeating No. 19 Carnegie Mellon 2–0 in Pittsburgh on Sunday. The conference championship secures the team a spot in the NCAA DIII National Tournament.
“[Winning the championship] is a colossal achievement,” said first-year forward Dayo Adeosun. “It started from the beginning of the year in preseason all the way to the game against Carnegie. Winning the UAA is a great thing for the entire team and shows that our hard work pays off.”
Third-year goalkeeper Hill Bonin also won his own personal accolades by setting the program’s record for most career shutouts and single-season shutouts with 24 and 12, respectively.
“I’ve spent a lot of time in the off-seasons here putting in a lot of work, so it’s really cool to be able to see results and reap the benefits of that on the field, and leave a mark here for, I mean, maybe a little while,” said Bonin, who made eight saves this weekend. “However long [it stands], it’s cool to be able to do that.”
Friday’s draw against the Spartans was the first time the Maroons failed to win all season. They dominated the game with 23 shots in comparison to Case’s seven, while tallying nine corner kicks while their opponents received only one.
Fourth-year forward Brenton Desai hit the post twice, in the 20th minute of regulation and the 101st minute during the first overtime. Third-year midfielder Andre Abedian also hit the post during the first overtime in the 98th minute.
However, rather than being disappointed, the team viewed the draw as a learning experience. “I thought we played really well for the final 30 minutes, [but] it was a point of growth that we didn’t play as well as we could have for most of the game and weren’t able to save it at the end like we have in some other games this season,” Bonin said. “So I think it was a really good experience going forward, and I think it really set us up for Sunday to play a lot better than we have in a while.”
The South Siders knew they could clinch the conference title with a win on Sunday, so the good performance was crucial. They fought evenly with the Tartans for most of the first half, but the South Siders finally broke through in the 44th minute when Adeosun delivered a corner kick to first-year defender Sam Drablos, who headed the ball into the back of the net.
The team held on defensively and eventually sealed its victory when Desai scored in the 86th minute via assists from Adeosun and second-year forward Max Lopez.
Despite the score line, the game was even, with 11 shots and seven corner kicks for the Maroons, as opposed to 10 shots and five corner kicks for the Tartans.
The team concludes its regular season this Saturday at 7 p.m. on the road against Wash U.