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Mariners Win 2016 Skyline Men’s Soccer Championship

Mariners Win 2016 Skyline Men’s Soccer Championship

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Watch Yingling's Championship-Winning Goal

KINGS POINT, N.Y. (Nov 5, 2016) – The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy men's soccer team is headed to the NCAA Tournament! The top-seeded Mariners defeated visiting #6-seed Sage, 1-0, in overtime of the 2016 Skyline Conference Championship Finals on Saturday at Brooks Stadium.
 
The Mariners (13-4-2) return to the national tournament for the first time since the 2011 season, when they won the Landmark Conference. The Gators of The Sage Colleges end the season with a 7-8-5 record.
 
It was senior Gavin Yingling (Salisbury, Md.) who tallied "golden goal" in the 99th minute, when he finished off a beautifully-crossed ball by classmate Tim Hughes (Ballston Lake, N.Y.). Yingling's header from 15 yards out sailed over the head of Sage freshman keeper Mike Chiaravalloti – who came out of position just a bit too far – and found the twine in the middle of the net.
 
Junior Hannes Rogers (Weinheim, Germany) also picked up an assist on Yingling's 20th goal of the season. Yingling was named the Most Outstanding Player of the 2016 Skyline Championships after tallying three goals over the Mariners' two tournament games this week.
 
In goal, senior Cory Maier (Hampton, Va.) picked up his ninth shutout of the season (five solo and four combined) after he matched his career-high with seven saves in nearly 99 minutes of action.
 
For Sage, Chiaravalloti ended the day with a career-high nine saves in the losing effort. The Gators mustered eight shots on the day (seven on goal), with three players leading the way with two shots on goal each – junior Paul Reynoso, sophomore River Seybolt and junior Kevin Saar.
 
The Mariners outshot the Gators by a total of 25-8 in the contest, but both teams had their fair share of great scoring chances in the very close affair.
 
"Sage gave us trouble early on and we are pleased that our team stayed calm and we improved our play as the match wore on," commented USMMA 27th-year Head Coach Michael Smolens. "We created some terrific chances, with our defense staying solid and keeping Sage's dangerous attackers at bay. A terrific combination from Tim Hughes to Gavin (Yingling) got us the goal we needed, but it was a total team effort which got us the victory.
 
"Coach Fitzgerald, Coach Cochrane and I are very proud of our guys for this great accomplishment, and we appreciate the work that everyone on our squad has put in to take us to the NCAAs. I am very proud of the tradition of excellence our program has established and I know there a many Kings Pointers with whom we share this win. We are looking forward to the challenge wherever it takes us."
 
The NCAA Division III Men's Soccer Championship selection show is scheduled for this Monday, Nov. 7, at 1 p.m. The show can be viewed and the full bracket will be available on the NCAA.com website by following this link, with more information at this link. The Mariners will learn who they will face in the first round of the tournament, which begins next weekend, Saturday, Nov. 12. A full release will be available with updates on www.USMMASports.com on Monday afternoon.
 
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If you would like to receive the latest news on the USMMA men's soccer team, including all press releases, send an e-mail to Assistant Athletic Director for Communications Joe Guster at gusterj@usmma.edu with the subject "Men's Soccer E-Mails."
 
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