BOSTON, Mass. – With a tremendous defensive effort and some tough physical play, men's soccer was able to pick-up a huge point in Little East Conference play as they tied the defending conference tournament champs Eastern Connecticut State University by the score of 1-1 Saturday afternoon at the Clark Athletic Center Field.
The tie ended the Warriors (7-1-2, 2-0-1 Little East) seven-game win streak but extends their unbeaten streak to nine straight matches. The lone goal by the Beacons (7-4-1, 1-1-1 Little East) also brought an end to their five-game shutout streak which started in mid-September.
UMB also ended a 13-game losing streak to the Warriors with Saturday's draw marking the first non-loss to ECSU since they defeated them back in 1999 by the score of 3-2 on the Clark Athletic Center Field. The tie marked the first-ever in the 26 meetings between the two teams.
Facing a huge test on their home field the Beacons came out firing in Saturday's match-up. After swallowing a tough non-conference loss to Bridgewater State University earlier in the week, the Beacons knew they had to bounce back and take down the top team in the LEC to keep their playoff dreams alive.
UMB dominated the play in the first 45 minutes with Edmilson Barros (Boston, Mass.) scoring the go-ahead goal in the 26th minute. The goal, which was unassisted, marked the team-leading eighth of the year for the freshman. After receiving a pass right outside the Warriors box, the dangerous back took the Warriors defense on one-on-one. With a quick flick of the ball Barros was able to get around the first defender. As he began to take on the second, the ball shot up in the air.
He would then make a great move around the final defender and just as the ball came down he would blast it to the near post to give the Beacons a 1-0 lead. The tally would be one of eight shots taken in the first half by the Beacons, while the defense led by Dylan Hawkins (North Easton, Mass.), Paul Erne (San Diego, Calif.), Lucas Ordosgoitia (Cartagena, Colombia), Matheus Reis (Somerville, Mass.), and Alfonso Rosales (Revere, Mass.) allowed just one shot from the Warriors.
The Beacons actually found the back of the net earlier in the first half, but that goal was called back by the official after Barros was flagged for the offside.
After the break, ECSU would tie the match at 1-1 on a penalty kick goal from Mitch Power. The Beacons were whistled for a clear take down in the box just 26 seconds into the new half, allowing Power to tie the score on his fourth tally of the season.
From there the two squads would continue to battle back-and-forth. However it was the Beacons offense that managed a majority of the chances throughout the rest of regulation.
As time continued to wind down, the Warriors got their best chance of the half called back due to an offside. A laser of a shot from about 12 yards out nearly gave ECSU the advantage on the scoreboard, unfortunately for the Warriors they were flagged by the sideline official, ending the celebration abruptly.
With the score still deadlocked, both teams knew that the match was headed to overtime. In the first OT, UMass Boston recorded the only two shots one of which went wide, the other blocked by an Eastern defender. In the second OT, ECSU nearly walked away with a victory had it not been for a huge save by Rosales in the opening minutes. The Warriors would get off just one more shot before Marcus Pizzetti (Malden, Mass.) was able to return the favor with a pair of shots of his own, both of which were saved by Greg Walton.
Walton made a combined five saves in the match to earn his second tie of the year (7-1-2), while Rosales (6-4-1) earned his first collegiate draw following a two save afternoon.
On the day, the Beacons outshot ECSU 19-7 and held a 6-2 advantage in corner kicks as well.
The Beacons return to action on Wednesday when they host Emerson College at 3:30 p.m. in a non-conference match.