First win over Williams in 86 years pushes men's soccer into postseason
The Hamilton College Continentals (5-6-3, 3-4-3 NESCAC) rallied for their first win over the Williams College Ephs in 86 years, 2-1, at Williams' Cole Field on Wednesday.
Hamilton’s win, coupled with Amherst College’s win over Trinity College, clinched the eighth and final spot in the 2013 NESCAC championship for the Continentals. They’ll play at top-seeded Amherst in the quarterfinals at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday.
Williams (9-5-0, 6-4 NESCAC) is ranked second in the NCAA New England Region poll, which is based on the same criteria used to select and seed teams for the 2013 NCAA championship.
Bayard Geeslin ’16 scored the game-winning goal in the 72nd minute and the Continentals withstood three shots by Williams in the final seven minutes. Geeslin’s goal was his second of the season. He also notched the tying goal in Hamilton’s come-from-behind win over Utica College on Oct. 22. Dan Kraynak '15 picked up the assist.
A shot by Williams' Jonathan Westling ’16 was saved off the line by Andrew Martin ’16 with 6:50 to go and 12 seconds later Hamilton goalkeeper Fred Porges ’14 (eight saves) stonewalled Chris Conder ’15 on the rebound. Three minutes later, another Westling shot was saved by Porges. The Ephs' final scoring opportunity came in the last minute when they were awarded a corner kick that was played to Geoff Danilack ‘16, whose shot went wide.
The Ephs held a 19-10 shot advantage, including a penalty kick early in the second half that Porges turned away.
Kraynak picked up his team-leading fifth goal and tied the game in the 23rd minute. Kraynak converted a pass from Leo Nizzi '14, who picked up his third assist this season and the 16th of his Hamilton career.
Williams’ leading scorer, Matt Muralles ‘15, put the Ephs on the board first with a goal in the 13th minute. Peter Morrell ’14 stopped two shots for Williams.
Hamilton men's soccer, which last appeared in the postseason in 2010, will make its first trip to the NESCAC championship in three years in the conference. The Continentals entered the day 1-31-4 all-time against Williams and their only series win was back in 1927 (4-1). Hamilton had lost 12 straight to the Ephs dating back to a 1-1 tie in 1990.
Amherst is the top-ranked team in both the NCAA regional poll and the Division III Top 25 coaches poll. The Continentals played the Lord Jeffs (then ranked No. 3) to a 1-1 tie three weeks ago at Hamilton's Love Field.