#20 Men’s Soccer Battles #1 Amherst to 1-1 Draw

Greg Conrad netted Middlebury's goal late in the first half.
Greg Conrad netted Middlebury's goal late in the first half.

Middlebury and Amherst went toe-to-toe for 110 minutes, but the two nationally-ranked men’s soccer programs ended in a 1-1 draw on Saturday. Both teams sport identical 2-0-1 records and 1-0-1 marks in the NESCAC.

Middlebury had the best chance to open the scoring when Amherst was called for a foul in the penalty area, resulting in a penalty kick with 24:52 on the clock. Senior Adam Glaser (Washington, D.C.) took the kick for the Panthers, but his shot headed for the lower-right corner was smothered by keeper Lee Owen.

The Purple & White netted the match's initial goal when Andrew Orozco headed in a pass at the right post from Kieran Bellow with 12:46 remaining in the half.

The Panthers countered quickly with a goal less than four minutes later. Senior Tom Dils (Williamstown, Mass.) threaded a pass through the Amherst defense to classmate Greg Conrad (Peabody, Mass.), who at full speed touched the ball past a charging Owen and buried a shot into the vacated net. Conrad’s goal came with 9:06 left on the clock, and the tie score held through the remainder of the half.

In the second half, the visitors had a quality chance to regain the lead in the 56th minute. Christopher Martin had a partial breakaway, but Panther senior goalie Greg Sydor (Madison, Conn.) came out of his net to make the save on a low shot.

Dils had a pair of great opportunities in the 67th minute for Middlebury when he headed his first shot off the left post. His second header on the rebound went wide on the right side.

Middlebury’s defense prevented Amherst’s bid to take the lead in 73rd minute, blocking a direct kick by Bryce Ciambella from 18 yards out.

After finishing regulation at 1-1, the teams played two scoreless 10-minute overtime periods to end in a draw.

Sydor finished with a pair of saves for the Panthers, while Owen had five. Amherst held edges in both shots (16-11) and corner kicks (9-4).

• Men’s soccer record: 2-0-1
• Up next: 9/21 vs. Keene State – 4:30 p.m., 9/24 vs. Bowdoin – 11:00 a.m.