Soccer, Sports

American opens Patriot League play for men’s soccer

Junior midfielder Satchel Cortet had an assist against Harvard. PHOTO BY LEXI PLINE/ DFP FILE PHOTO

After a 0-2-1 series against three Ivy League opponents, the Boston University men’s soccer will look to rebound back home on Nickerson Field against American University.

The match will be the Terriers’ (1-4-2) first Patriot League game of the season.

Despite the team’s recent record, BU head coach Neil Roberts said he has confidence in his team.

“We played well against [Harvard University],” Roberts said. “The score wasn’t there, but I thought we were doing the right things.”

American (1-3-2) earned its lone win of the season in its season opener against George Mason University.

The Eagles outpaced George Mason (1-2) in shots during the first half but allowed Patriot midfielder Grant Robinson to score an unassisted goal in the 17th minute.

The team then converted half of its four shots in the second half into goals with the game-winner coming from American junior Fabio Massaro.

The 2018 season is the midfielder’s first with the Eagles after spending a year each with two NJCAA schools.

American then lost two games with a goal differential of 11-1.

In the team’s first 0-6 match against George Washington University, Eagle goalkeepers John Mino and Lucas Manso made a combined total of two saves.

Manso, who has started six games in his freshman year, made eight saves in American’s subsequent 1-5 loss against West Virginia University.

Roberts described the start of conference play as a chance for a team to reset.

“It’s almost like a second season,” Roberts said. “The younger kids will notice the intensity pick up.”

After their loss against West Virginia (4-3), the Eagles have only allowed themselves to be outscored once in a 3-2 loss to Oregon State University.

This is the second year in a row that BU opened its conference play against American.

Last season, BU shut out American while in its home, Washington, D.C.

Senior goalkeeper Mike Bernardi, who has started the last three Terrier games, made six saves in his last face off against the American attack.

BU won its first win of the season last time it played at home against the University of Massachusetts Amherst, with the winning shot coming off the boot of freshman midfielder Kari Petursson.

In the following match against Dartmouth College, the Terriers lost their leading attack, junior forward Matt McDonnell.

BU was then shut out by Princeton University and fell in overtime to Harvard (2-5).

The Terriers’ lone goal against the Crimson and their second during McDonnell’s absence came from sophomore forward Austin D’Anna’s first of the season, assisted by junior midfielder Satchel Cortet.

Still, BU lags behind its opponents in every offensive statistic.

The Terriers have exactly half of the assists as the opposing teams, a statistic that was not aided by leading assist producer sophomore midfielder Toti Knutsson’s brief absence against Princeton (4-3).

After the Harvard match, Cortet became the second on the lists of assists with his second.

Roberts spoke to the need for more offensive production to win games.

“With losing [McDonnell], we still need someone who can score goals,” Roberts said. “No one has really stepped up and proved themselves to be that person who can consistently score.”

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