UMass men’s soccer squares off at Boston University on the road Friday night

Minutemen are coming off their victory against Sacred Heart

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Parker Peters/Daily Collegian

By Frederick Hanna III, Assistant Sports Editor

Coming off of an impressive road victory at Sacred Heart, the Massachusetts men’s soccer team is off campus once again to take on Boston University this Friday night.

UMass (1-0-1) bounced back nicely after an opening tie to Northeastern and were able to get the job done on the road thanks to a brace from Joe Leslie at Sacred Heart. Now its attention shifts to BU (0-2), who has yet to win a game in each of its opening two matches, but has faced two challenging opponents in New Hampshire and Boston College.

“We’ve got a lot of work to do,” goalkeeper Marvyn Dorchin said. “We are trying to tune it in and a huge focus on [Friday] because it’s going to be very hard for the rest of the season. So far, the guys have adapted and their happy to be here, so we have very good chemistry on the team and that really helps for the start of the season.”

Dorchin has been a brick wall in net for UMass throughout his career. From acrobatic saves to clutch instincts, the graduate goalkeeper is a leader and mentor for a lot of the young guys on the team. His off the field character speaks for itself to a lot of players and coaches who look up to him as a leader and his performances on the pitch showcase the talent and skills he has to help the rest of the team. Out of 22 shots faced this season, Dorchin has only allowed one goal. He started all 12 games last year in the shortened season due to COVID-19. He was a crucial player in the Minutemen’s appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

“We have a foundation that is mostly for pressing,” Dorchin said. “We are just trying to get that details that we have been missing. We’ve been understanding the whole overall concept as a team, but we still haven’t perfected it, so we are trying as much as possible to get the details right. So far for practices and preparations we have to get our minds right and make sure that we work as a unit.”

Leslie secured the win for the Minutemen against Sacred Heart with a brace on the road and showcased his confidence and talents on the pitch. The sophomore transfer from Biggleswade FC over in England is in his first year with UMass.

“Feels really good [to be here],” Leslie said. “Obviously been here for three weeks now and training has been good. Everything has been very professional. That game [against Sacred Heart] was a good moment to get my first two goals in college soccer.”

The London native is playing college soccer for the first time in his career, and certainly has seen the similarities and differences in soccer being played over here and back home. For Biggleswade FC he scored seven goals along with eight assists during his span of 14 games played. He was a part of the youth clubs of Chelsea FC, Watford FC and Barnet FC as well.

“It took a while to settle in,” Leslie said. “Originally with the jet lag but now the team are all a great bunch of guys. Everyone has been very welcoming and I’m really enjoying it. It’s very tactical here which is good, and everyone seems to try and know exactly what they are doing to get the best result. There’s no messing around.”

The Minutemen continue their season with a road matchup with BU Friday at 7 p.m.

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