Bruised Bears and Bruised Pride

Dylan Rupptrecht

On September 5, both University of New Haven men’s and women’s soccer teams kicked off the start of their 2013 season. Spectators saw both Charger soccer teams play persistently against their visiting opponents, but with two different results. The men’s side fought a long-lasting battle, which was taken away from them by a late goal from number nine, Sean Collins, giving Dowling the narrow win over the Chargers (2-1). The women scored early goals to cap a winning start to their season against NYIT (4-0).

Photo Provided by Charger Athletics

The Chargers got the opening goal when a Dowling defender accidently headed the ball into his own net. Number nine, Sal DiTommaso, created this opportunity by dribbling past the defense and sending a cross into the box. The coaches and high-strung fans cheered 15 minutes into the second half; fouls and yellow cards were given out during this phase.

Sophomore goalkeeper, James Pyatsky, did all he could to prevent the Golden Lions from penetrating his goal. Despite punching a ball flung in from a corner onto his crossbar, Pyatsky was unable to cope with the ball rebounding for Dowling. With less than 10 minutes to go, tensions high, players bloodied, and physicality tested, the Chargers used what strength and determination was left to throw anything in the way of the barrage of shots, until Dowling scored the heartbreaking winning goal less than two minutes from stoppage time.

It was a different result on the women’s side, when they finished off their opponent early. The ball didn’t seem to even touch the Chargers’ half for the opening 10 minutes of the game. Nine minutes was all it took for UNH to take the lead off of a header from number nine, senior Monica Yanez. Yanez weaved effortlessly behind the defense for most of the first half. She tagged home a precedential second goal, springing her into the top ten goal scorers in UNH soccer history. One goal more before the half off of a volley by number three, freshman Carlie Schecht, secured the Chargers’ lead against NYIT girls.

Ultimately, the hole was too deep for the bruised bears to crawl out of, and a fourth goal from number four, senior Tami Vargas, cemented the win for the women. Number 14, senior Amanda Hathaway, not only assisted in keeping a clean sheet at the back for the women, but also facilitated three of the four goals against NYIT.

The men’s side heads to the road hoping for better results in a three-game road stretch before coming back for a game versus the Saint Rose Golden Knights on Sept. 17. The women look to keep up the momentum with a home match on Sept. 7 versus Dominican. They will then travel to play Dowling on Sept. 12. Come out and support both teams this season and help cheer them on to the Northeastern Conference playoffs. The season has officially begun!