Dorchin, UMass defense pull out the clean sheet in 2-0 win over Northeastern

Dorchin finished with four saves against the Huskies

By Frederick Hanna III, Collegian Staff

When the Massachusetts men’s soccer team stepped on the field against Northeastern Wednesday night, it had been 480 days since the last time they stepped on the pitch.

In UMass’ (1-0) season opener against Northeastern, it showed no signs of rust and played a complete and dominant 90 minutes to pull out the 2-0 win.

The man of the match in some regards could have come from countless players on the UMass attack that proved to be second to none against the Huskies (0-1), but in net for the matchup was senior Marvyn Dorchin who put on an outstanding display of goalkeeping.

“He is terrific,” UMass coach Fran O’Leary said. “He had a very strong season last year, he conceded less than a goal per game and he was terrific today. You’re hoping your goalkeeper can step up and make a big save and he made a couple in this game and played a big role in us getting a clean sheet.”

Dorchin finished the game with four critical saves that kept Northeastern off the scoreboard. The senior made some acrobatic saves in the first half. His first save of the game came in the fourth minute on a shot headed towards the top of the net by Northeastern’s Zach Sauer. Dorchin reached out with his body and pushed away the shot for a Northeastern corner. It was certainly a huge save early as that ball was curling towards the back of the net. Just 10 minutes later, Dorchin saved a low shot heading to the bottom left corner of the net to keep the game scoreless.

In the second half Dorchin stepped up big again for the Minutemen to keep the lead. The senior made a big stop in the opening minutes of the second half and pushed out a shot by Timothy Ennin of Northeastern. In the 72nd minute Dorchin stretched to his right to deny the shot from Ennin again that was heading to the bottom right of the net.

The back four was huge all game for the Minutemen in keeping the clean sheet. Graham Brenner, Logan Brown, Shawn Allien and Eli Cronin took the majority of the minutes against Northeastern and formed a formidable back line that proved tough to break through. Northeastern struggled to get anything going and the back four of UMass broke up any build up play that they were trying to create. It was a stout defensive effort on the pitch for UMass’ backline that gave the attacking players comfortability in creating chances on the other end.

“I thought [the back line] was excellent,” O’Leary said. “To be truthful, I think when all is said and done this season people will look back and say Northeastern has a very potent attack. I think in their two pre-season games, they scored seven goals. For us to shut out such an attack, it speaks volumes for us as a collective defensively and obviously our back four played a big role.”

The attacking play will receive much of the credit against Northeastern, but it was the defensive effort that kept UMass’ lead throughout the game. Challenges made on Northeastern’s attack by the back four helped in the buildup play in the counter attacks feeding the ball through Ben Shepard and Yosuke Hanya who were clinical in creating opportunities for UMass.

UMass heads on the road again to take on Vermont this Saturday at 2 p.m.

Frederick Hanna III can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @FrederickHIII.