Under the lights on Garcelon, the men’s soccer team opened their season with a convincing 3-0 win over the University of Maine-Farmington Beavers. Striker Eric Opoku ‘20 enjoyed his first collegiate game, scoring two goals and displaying fantastic foot skills and clinical finishing. Opoku was nervous about his transition from high school to college but was able to step up the plate. “I realized that I have a group of boys (brothers) who believe in my ability and provide me with a platform to always express myself. Knowing the support behind me, I entered into Thursday’s game feeling comfortable and more than ready to play,” Opoku stated. Other key performances were from Peabo Knoth ‘17 who had two assists, and from senior Jack Martell ‘17 who held up the back line and stifled the Beaver offense. The game was the Bobcat’s eighth consecutive non-conference win.
On Saturday, Bates had their first conference game against Hamilton College. The Continentals scored early on in the 4th minute, and Bates could not even the score throughout the remainder of the game. Bates’ keeper Robbie Montanaro had five stops on the day, including some incredible acrobatic saves. The Bobcats had 16 total shots but only five on goal. After the game, captain Luke McNabb ‘17 commented on the team’s mentality, “After a loss, the best mindset to have is learning from the mistakes you make during the loss and applying them for the next game. Once the game is played we move on to the next one. Our only concern is the game at hand.”
The Bobcats put their lost behind them right away, defeating the previously undefeated Newbury Nighthawks 2-1 the next day. The visiting Newbury team scored in the final seconds of a mostly uneventful first half. Bates turned up their attack in the second half, outshooting their opponents 16-5. The relentless effort paid off, and Drew Parsons ‘19 scored his first career goal in the 52nd minute. Less than one minute later, McNabb put the winning goal in the back of the net. Once they had the lead, Bates’ defense shut the door to preserve the victory.
The men’s team takes on University of New England and Tufts, in their first road trips of the season.