Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass defeats Yale 1-0 with late goal from Begliardi Ghidini

Minutemen out-shoot Bulldogs 11-8
Mehroz Kapadia / Daily Collegian

Looking to earn its third consecutive win in a row, the Massachusetts men’s soccer team continued to thrive in a thrilling 1-0 road victory against Yale on Tuesday night.

The Minutemen (6-2-1, 1-1-0 Atlantic 10) kept offensive and defensive pressure on the Bulldogs (3-4) throughout the match. However, it took a beautiful goal from Filippo Begliardi Ghidini in the final minutes of regulation for UMass to prevail.

The match started off with a few close chances for both teams. Yale had two shots and a corner kick within the first two minutes of the game. This included a point-blank shot from first-year defender Gelber Lemus which Minutemen goaltender Marvyn Dorchin was barely able to save off the edge of his foot.

After the early attack from the Bulldogs, UMass started to settle in and generate some chances of its own. Senior midfielder Ben Shepherd hit the crossbar on a powerful shot from the edge of the penalty area a little past the four-minute mark. Shepherd’s shot was the closest of a few quality chances for the Minutemen to take the lead in the first half.

“I think persistence is the key,” UMass head coach Fran O’Leary said. “One of the hardest things in sport… it’s definitely the hardest thing in soccer to score a goal particularly against a well-coached and well-organized team. We came close on several occasions. You just have to keep going… what allows you to come away with a win is our collective team defending.”

The Minutemen went with their typical defensive strategy applying intense pressure on Yale throughout the game. This allowed them to control momentum for most of the first half as the Bulldogs were only able to take five shots.

“Our identity is our pressing,” O’Leary said. “Every team has something and for us we’ve got to have the ability to move towards the ball. It’s no secret that we like to press, and we’ve made big strides over the last three games. Tonight, we were able to do it for 90 minutes and that hopefully will give us a big amount of confidence and belief going into a very tough stretch of A-10 games.”

Similarly, to the start of the match, Yale came out with a lot of energy to start the second half. UMass settled in once again and started to put an even greater amount of pressure on junior goalkeeper Elian Haddock.

As the tail-end of regulation approached, it appeared that the Minutemen would be headed to overtime for the second time in their past three games. That was until junior defender Logan Brown laid out a perfect lead pass to Begliardi Ghidini from the UMass penalty area with just over four minutes left in the match. Begliardi Ghidini was able to stop short right in front of the goal line to fake out the lone defender next to him and bury a shot in the opposite side of the net.

“He’s unselfish, he’s unspoiled, and he’s a terrific person with a terrific work rate,” O’Leary said. “What he’s added now is more goals. We’re halfway through the season and that’s already his sixth goal. He was a handful for their defense tonight, and I’m delighted that his performance was topped off with the winning goal.”

The Minutemen look to remain hot with five consecutive A-10 matches on deck. They’ll try to extend the streak in a road match against Dayton at 7 p.m. on Saturday.


Richard Rodgers can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @RichardDRodgers.

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