Williams men's soccer team draws with Bates, 1-1

Williams men's soccer co-captain Tobias Mueller discusses his team's draw against Bates.
WILLIAMSTOWN — Sometimes, salvaging a point when a team plays a man down for nearly an hour elicits smiles.

The Williams College men's soccer team understood that it had weathered the storm against Bates with 10 men for most of the second half and two, 10-minute overtime periods. That didn't seem to lessen the sting of a 1-1 draw against the Bobcats, the second time in as many days Williams had played to a 1-1 tie.

"Obviously, we're not satisfied. A tie is never satisfying, especially yesterday, scoring first and then being equalized on," Williams defender Tobias Muellers said. "Today, I think our team showed a strong spirit in responding and holding Bates to one. We've just got to be better finishing and keeping the ball out of the back of the net."

Williams (3-1-2, 2-1-2 NESCAC) had scored first in a 1-1 draw against Little Three rival Amherst on Saturday. On Sunday, the Bobcats got on the board in the first five minutes, only to have Williams rally and tie.

Williams went a man down on a tackle by Scatt Macdonald, who earned a red card at 52:06 for taking down Antonio Heredia. The Ephs did not let that negatively impact them. In fact, Williams had 10 shots in the second half and overtime to four for Bates, and had seven corner kicks in the first OT period to none for the Bobcats (3-1-1, 1-1-1).

"We don't try to gauge matchups. Six points are tough to earn at any time in this league. I thought we had more opportunities to secure three [points] today, and I think four from this weekend with overtime games would have been a real positive," Williams coach Erin Sullivan said. "Obviously, the circumstances changed on the red card. I thought our team showed a lot of spirit a man down, and didn't just settle for a cautious approach."

The scoring was finished before 20 minutes had ticked off the clock. Bates' Nate Merchant made it 1-0 at 4:05. Williams tied it at 16:28 off a corner kick. Andrew Mathew got the tying goal.

In the last 17 minutes of regulation, Williams had six separate good scoring chances. Williamstown's Eric Hirsch might have had the best of those chances. In the 82nd minute, Mark Sisco-Tolomeo set Hirsch up for the shot. Bates goalkeeper Robbie Montarano made the kick save.

In the second overtime, Hirsch and Sisco-Tolomeo hooked up again for a great looking, but ultimately unsuccessful chance. Sisco-Tolomeo redirected a ball toward the right post, but Hirsch couldn't get there in time.

The Ephs come back to Cole Field Wednesday for a home match against Skidmore, before meeting NESCAC foe Conn. College Saturday.

"That spirit shows that this team is hungry for more," Sullivan said. "Our attacking unit is figuring it out. When they do, I think we're going to be able to capitalize and convert."

Reach sports writer Howard Herman at 413-496-6253 or @howardherman.


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