After a disappointing two-loss road trip, the men’s soccer team returned to Reese Stadium looking for a weekend of redemption. Having overhauled their offensive formation, the Bulldogs hoped to produce goals and get their offense off to an electric start.
But in a 0–0 tie with Manhattan (1–3–1, 0–0–0 MAAC) on Friday and a 1–0 loss to Central Connecticut State University (3–2, 0–0–0 Northeast Conference) yesterday afternoon, Yale (0–4–2, 0–0–0 Ivy) failed to produce a single goal in 200 total minutes of play.
In fact, the Bulldogs have failed to score in their last four games, a total of 380 minutes of soccer played. In this weekend’s contests, scoring woes proved the Elis’ downfall once again.
The match against Manhattan was a hard fought draw that featured ample opportunities for both sides. Goalkeeper Ryan Simpson ’17 produced an impressive performance that saw him save all six of the Jaspers’ shots on frame.
Unfortunately for the Elis, Simpson’s stellar netminding was wasted, as the squad failed to score on any of its 17 shots despite landing six on target. The match emerged as a defensive standoff, with neither team finding the net in 110 minutes of play and both goalkeepers providing staunch defensive efforts.
“We struggled in the final third, failing to score a goal. I’m sure our coaches have a lot of finishing practice scheduled for the upcoming week,” Teddy Mauze ’18 said. “All the bad memories of our nonconference games can be erased with a shiny Ivy League ring.”
Against the CCSU Blue Devils, Yale fell victim to another of the issues that has plagued them all season. The Elis gave up a second-half goal that allowed their opposition to defend hard and shut down Yale’s offensive efforts. After going into the locker room with the game still firmly up for grabs, the Elis gave away a heart breaking unassisted goal to CCSU’s Ryan Taylor just three minutes into the second half. The forward dribbled to the right wing and launched a shot that deflected off of a Yale defender and into the back of the Elis’ net, beating Blake Brown ’15, who started in goal in Yale second match of the weekend.
“Our defending has been solid and our approach play has been good but we have had a hard time getting the ball into the net,” head coach Brian Tompkins said. “Our possession and ball movement against Central was very good and apart from one lapse that led to their goal, they didn’t trouble us much at all. On the other end we created chance after chance but weren’t able to covert one into a goal.”
In spite of this setback, the Elis managed to rally, outshooting the Blue Devils 15–7 in the second half and producing nine more corners than their opposition. Yale’s comeback was sabotaged once again, however, by an inability to finish in front of the net. In spite of these huge offensive production numbers the Elis were once again unable to produce an equalizer.
“Both the Friday and the Sunday games were a big step forward and even though we didn’t win I still believe that we are making great progress towards being a very good team,” Henry Albrecht ’17 said. “We had numerous opportunities in both games and, in my opinion, we were by far better than Manhattan and CCSU.”
The men’s soccer team will continue its season on Friday against Quinnipiac.