Men’s Soccer wins Patriot League Title

Dominique Daniels , Staff Writer

An upset over second-seeded Navy in the semifinals on Nov. 14 pushed the men’s soccer team into the Patriot League Finals. With a 3-2 overtime win at No. 24 Boston University in the Patriot League Championship game on Nov. 16, the Bison secured an NCAA Tournament berth for the first time since 2010.

The squad came into the finals as the fifth seed but did not play as an underdog the entire game. Much of the Bison’s confidence came after a tough semifinal victory over Navy, who were the reigning Patriot League Champion.

“Getting past Navy was a huge accomplishment for us because they ended our season last year and were incredibly confident that they were going to do that again,” Brian Ward ’15 said.

Navy defeated the Orange and Blue in last year’s semifinal on its way to the championship. Coincidentally, the Bison followed that exact same path this year, beating the Midshipmen 5-4 in penalty kicks after a scoreless 110 minutes.

The Bison then faced off against top-seeded Boston U. in the Patriot League Finals. Boston U. had only given up more than one goal twice all season heading into the title game. Nevertheless, confidence remained for the Orange and Blue.

“Once we got past Navy, there was a certain confidence about our team that we were going to win the next one too,” Ward said.

Led by midfielder Sebastiaan Blickman ’17, the Bison defeated Boston U. in overtime. Not only did they score more than one goal, they defeated Boston U. on its home field.

Blickman was a huge factor for the Bison success, scoring two goals, including the winner in overtime. The Massachusetts-native had not scored a goal in his career coming into the game. Blickman’s role this season was more on the defensive side, but he stepped up when his number was called.

“It was really special to see a kid like Seb, who works so hard and so badly deserves to do well, win the game for us and get the tournament MVP award,” Ward said.

As a team, the Bison played extremely well, never trailing in the match. In the 32nd minute, Jesse Klug ’16 dribbled through the Terrier defense and scored his 11th goal of the season to take a 1-0 lead. The Orange and Blue held this lead going into the half.

Boston U. responded in the 52nd minute, but the Bison struck back quickly. In the 54th minute, Blickman scored his first goal of the day, coming off an excellent pass from Chris Thorsheim ’16.

Boston U. then forced overtime with the score 2-2. Stopping multiple shots from its opponent, the defense was able to prevent Boston U. from taking the lead. Offensively, just 1:56 into the overtime period, Blickman scored his second goal of the day, coming off a nice pass from Jack Zollicoffer ’18.

The squad faced off against UNC Wilmington on Nov. 20 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament in Wilmington.

 

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