Despite dominating play and creating a number of excellent chances, the US Merchant Marine Academy soccer tied played to a 1-1 draw with New Jersey City University on Sunday at Staten Island. The Mariners peppered the NJCU goal, having an 11-0 advantage in first half shots, but goalkeeper Tyler Krychkowski would not be beaten.
Both teams were challenged by the sweltering heat, and the second half continued much the same with the Mariners dominating play, but not being able to find the back of the net. With 5 minutes left in regulation, off a counter-attack the Gothic Knights were awarded a penalty kick and converted for a 1-0 advantage. Kings Point fought back and were finally able to equalize on a penalty kick of their own with one minute to go. Kyle Arestivo stepped up and hit the PK, notching his second goal in as many games.
The Mariners outshot NJCU 9-0 in the two overtimes, but were unable to convert and settled for the 1-1 draw. On the match the Mariners outshot the Gothic Knights 34-8. "Although we are disappointed not to get the win, Coaches Banks, Fitzgerald and I were pleased by many of the things we saw this weekend", said Head Coach Michael Smolens. "We had a number of new players take on large roles, and many of them responded very well. It is a long season and hopefully the lessons we learned will serve us well this fall."
The Mariners go to 1-0-1 on the season, while NJCU moves to 0-0-2. Up next for USMMA is another New Jersey Athletic Conference foe in Rutgers Newark. Newark, which received an NCAA tournament bid last year, serves as the opponent in the Mariners home opener on Wednesday night at 7:45 PM on Tomb Field.