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MEN'S SOCCER QUARTERFINALS: High Seeds Prevail at Home



The fourth-seeded Colby-Sawyer men's soccer team scored twice in the second half to secure a 2-0 victory over fifth-seeded Albertus Magnus in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Tournament quarterfinal on a blustery Friday afternoon.     

Colby-Sawyer (6-7-2) improves to 7-7-2 and advances to Tuesday's GNAC semifinal contest against the winner of tonight's other quarterfinal match between top-seeded and nationally ranked Saint Joseph's (ME) and eight-seeded Emmanuel. Albertus Magnus ends the season at 6-6-5.

Colby-Sawyer sophomore Ethan Sweet (Cornish, N.H.) broke a scoreless tie in the 69th minute with the game-winning goal. He took a touch five yards outside the 18-yard box and work around a defender to rip a ground ball shot into the left corner of the net past the dive of the Falcons keeper.

The Chargers added an insurance goal in the 87th minute off the foot of first-year Jonathan Martinez(Stony Point, N.Y.). The ball found Martinez after bouncing off multiple players in the box. With the ball still bouncing, Martinez volleyed his shot into the back of the net for his second goal of the season.

First-year Lucas Boetsch (Rockport, Maine) made a pair of saves for Colby-Sawyer, while Falcons goalie Joe Russo (North Haven, Conn.) had three saves.  

Colby-Sawyer held a 13-8 advantage in shots and a 7-5 edge in corner kicks.The Chargers move to 3-1-1 all-time against Albertus Magnus. 

Courtesy of Colby-Sawyer Athletics Communications.

#2 JWU 1, #7 REGIS 0
With a trip to the Great Northeast Athletic Conference semifinals on the line, it was a defensive battle between the Johnson & Wales University men's soccer team and Regis College. The Wildcats scored late in the first half and held on for the 1-0 victory on Friday. 

Regis: 8-7-2
Johnson & Wales: 12-5-2 

Statistical Leaders: 
Nick Gutekunst (JWU): 1 goal

RC: Jesse Bonilla (L, 7-6-1) 9 saves
JWU: Nicholas Mancini (W, 6-2-1) 3 saves

Of Note:
JWU moves on to face either Norwich (#3) or Saint Joseph's (CT) (#6).  The Wildcats beat Saint Joseph's (CT), 2-1, and lost to Norwich, 1-0, during the regular season.      

In the 43rd minute, JWU's Nick Gutekunst provided the lone goal for the contest which was unassisted. 

Regis keeper Jesse Bonilla kept the Pride in the hunt with nine saves as the Wildcats peppered the Regis goal.

Wildcats' goalkeeper Nicholas Mancini returned from injury to make three saves. 

Shots were heavily in JWU's favor, 24-8, while JWU and Regis were even at four corner opportunities. 

Next Game:
The second-seeded Wildcats will host the semifinal contest on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Courtesy of JWU Athletics Communications.

Junior Cody Elliott (Gorham, Maine) scored in the 77th minute to propel #5/10 Saint Joseph's College (18-0-0) past Emmanuel College (5-11-2), 1-0, in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Tournament Quarterfinal at the SJC Athletics Complex on Friday evening.


With the victory, top-seeded Saint Joseph's – ranked fifth and 10th nationally in the latest and United Soccer Coaches weekly polls, respectively - advances to the semifinal round of the GNAC tourney and will host #4 Colby-Sawyer College (7-7-2), which defeated #5 Albertus Magnus College by a 2-0 score earlier today, on Tuesday at 5:30 PM.

For Emmanuel, the loss signals the end of the 2018 season.


The Monks maintained possession for the better part of the game and had multiple scoring chances, but did not find the back of the net until the 76:38 mark when junior Mitchell Duncan (Sanford, Maine) found a seam at the top of the box and chipped a left-to-right pass to Elliott, who steered a shot to the left side of the goal.

The Saints registered the first scoring chance of the night when freshman forward Robert Danielian (Watertown, Mass.) clanged a shot off the crossbar in the 11th minute. SJC senior Brett Mattos (Mahopac, N.Y.) knocked a header off the crossbar at the 49:30 mark.


Saint Joseph's senior Blake Mullen (Manchester, N.H.) made a pair of saves to record his sixth shutout of the season while Emmanuel freshman Vincent Conelli (West Hartford, Conn.) – making his NCAA debut – kept the Saints in the game with 13 saves, including a handful of acrobatic stops, in the losing effort.


Saint Joseph's posted sizeable advantages in shots (26-5), shots on goal (14-2) and corner kicks (11-1) on the evening.


Saint Joseph's is now 10-3-1 in the history of the series with Emmanuel College and has now topped the Saints in four-consecutive meetings.

Courtesy of SJC Athletics Communications.

#3 NORWICH 2, #6 USJ 1
 The Norwich University men's soccer team advanced to the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Tournament semifinals for the 15th straight season with a 2-1 victory over the Univ. of St. Joseph (Conn.) on Friday evening at Sabine Field. 

Freshman Bienfait Badibanga (Burlington, Vt.) scored his team-leading 11th goal of the season in the 67th minute with a world-class strike off an assist from Bryce Sullenger (Gaithersburg, Md.) for what would prove to be the game-winning goal. 

Sullenger sent a crossing pass in from the right wing that Badibanga tapped up with his right foot and then side volleyed the ball into the back left corner of the net without the ball touching the ground for the goal of the year. 

No. 3-seed Norwich (11-2-4) will now travel to No. 2 Johnson & Wales for the second straight season for a GNAC semifinal matchup on Tuesday. The two teams will meet for the fourth straight year in the GNAC Semifinals. 

Univ. of St. Joseph (8-5-2) wouldn't go down without a fight though as the Blue Jays cut the deficit to 2-1 in the 76th minute with a goal off a set piece by Hayden Burbank. Burbank buried the ball into the left corner of the net after Domeniko Skrelja's free kick service from 45 yards out was flicked on by Castro to a wide open Burbank crashing at the left post. 

Norwich went up 1-0 in the 15th minute with Alex Brannan (Oneonta, N.Y.) scoring his second goal of the year with a strike from 30 yards out that clipped the bottom of the cross bar and bounced over the line for the first goal of the game. Dashiell Vermilya (Montpelier, Vt.) picked up the assist on the goal after dishing a pass over to Brannan before he ripped the shot on goal. 

Senior goalkeeper Brendan Germano (Monroe Township, N.J.) made three saves to improve to 11-2-4 on the season. Anes Gadun made seven saves for USJ in the loss. 

Top-seeded and two-time defending GNAC champion Saint Joseph's (Maine) will meet Colby-Sawyer in the other semifinal on Tuesday. The two semifinal winners will meet in the championship at the highest remaining seed on Saturday, Nov. 3.

Courtesy of Norwich Athletics Communications.

The Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) is an NCAA Division III association made up of 13 member institutions and over 3,000 student-athletes across the New England region. Founded in 1995, the GNAC annually sponsors and administers 20 championships, while balancing academic integrity, athletic opportunity and community involvement in an effort to enhance the student-athlete experience.