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The Action on the Pitch; SMCC Squads Start Season

By The Beacon Sports Staff

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Hanssen Casey (#21) headbutts the ball to keep it away from ACPHS.

While on the world stage soccer may have scaled back to club play and friendlies, here in Southern Maine and greater New England soccer in the Yankee Small College Conference has taken to the pitch (that’s European lingo for the field), as the SMCC SeaWolves have started non-conference play.

Ten days ago, the SeaWolves squads opened YSCC play when SMCC hosted the Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Science. For those of you who are new to SMCC and are fans of soccer, the SeaWolves home games are played at Wainwright Recreation Complex off of Highland Ave towards the South Portland Scarborough town line.

To date the teams have compiled a 3-2 record. The Lady SeaWolves have won their first two games of the season (3-2 against the Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Science and a 5-0 win against Green Mountain College).

The SeaWolve men dropped their first two games (1-2 against Albany and 0-2 against the Bowdoin College JV squad) before beating Green Mountain College 1-0.

The Beacon reached out to Ethan Wells the SeaWolves first-year coach for his thoughts regarding the start of the season and how he thinks his squad is developing as a team.

As for highlights to the young season Coach Wells said, “The highlight of the first two games has been watching 10 first year players have immediate success – some scoring their first collegiate goals and others contributing defensively with amazing composure. Meanwhile our returners have excelled in their roles as leaders. There will be many more highlights to come.”

Wells went on to explain that he, “couldn’t have asked for a better start to our season. The work we put in in preseason has been on display. This team features 14 wonderful young ladies who are making my experience as a first-year head coach a great one.”

As of Sunday, five different SeaWolves have scored for Well’s squad. After two games Callie O’Brien has turned over the numbers on the big board three times. Jessica Haskell has ruffled the netting twice, as Allison Acritelli, Yaya Dunn and Ryleigh Lord have scored once.

When asked who the SMCC women’s soccer fans might want to watch for, Coach Wells mentioned that, “Women’s soccer fans should look for Ryleigh Lord. She a player who gets us going in the locker room and brings communication to the pitch. Yaya Dunn is a high energy player on both sides of the ball and sophomore captain Callie O’Brien plays with so much heart and passion for the game she is a must watch player.

The SeaWolve Ladies return to Wainwright Field for a three game homestand on the 11th, 15th and 19th as they’ll take to the pitch against Central Maine Community College at 4pm, Paul Smith’s College at 2m and New Hampshire Technical Institute at 4pm respectfully.

Against Albany, the SMCC men’s squad would find themselves in a two – nil hole at the break as Albany would find the back of the net at the 19th minute and a few minutes before the halftime horn sounded.

SMCC would get on the big board at Wainwright Field in the 54th minute of play when Senior Jamal Durrani beat the Albany goal keeper for his third career goal as a defender.

SMCC would have a chance to level the scoring with a penalty kick in the 81st minute, the shot would not find the back of the net and SMCC could only fire off one more shot on goal before 90 minutes of play officially ended.

After the loss to Albany SMCC coach Brian Dougher reflected on how his squad played while looking ahead to the possibilities stating, “Although it wasn’t the result we were hoping for, there are successes to take away. We were able to create plenty of goal-scoring opportunities and absorb a relentless attack by a talented Albany squad. Looking forward to building on this performance.”

The SeaWolves men squad would win their first match of the young season against Green Mountain College winning 1-0 in Vermont on September 8th. Three days prior the Wolves would drop a non-conference game to the Bowdoin College JV squad 2-0 on the 5th.

SMCC would get on the board first against the Green Mountain Eagles at the 27th minute of play when midfielder Yaroslav Philbrook ruffled the back of the net for what ultimately would be the unassisted game winner. Philbrook’s winner would be one of numerous shoots the Wolves would get off against the Green Mountain Eagles.

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Ryleigh Lord (#16) kicks the ball towards the net in hopes of scoring a goal.

The Seawolves outshot the Eagles 23 to 14 with seven of the SMCC shots being placed on net. Green Mountain could only place four on net.

The SeaWolves men squad returns to play at Wainwright Field on the 12th, 15th and 20th when they play Central Maine Community College, Paul Smith’s College and New Hampshire Technical Institute. All matches have a kick off time of 4pm.

 

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