SCARBOROUGH, ME – The American Collegiate Athletic Conference in connection with the Association of Division 3 Independents kicked off their first conference tournament at Scarborough High School, with the University of Maine at Presque Isle serving as the hosts.
GAME 1 – WOMEN - #3 UMPI vs. #2 PINE MANOR
The opening half featured a back and forth between the two teams and a scoreless tie through most of the first half. The Owls would outshoot Pine Manor and finally break the tie in the 22nd minute when Carla Halvorson (SR, Easton, ME) found the net off of a great centering pass from Sam Nadeau (JR, St. David, ME). Despite UMPI controlling the possession and outshooting Pine Manor 15-7, The Gators' leading scorer would tie the game near the end of the half. Cassie Cavender (FR, Clarksville, TN) would drill a shot into the net in the 43rd minute, sending the game to break in a tie.
The Owls would open the second half with a couple of opportunities. UMPI would capitalize and Halvorson would set up Deliah Schreiber (FR, Liston, ME) would fire a shot in the lower left corner of the net. The Gators would answer after a hard shot right on goal was denied, Pine Manor would keep the momentum. In the 54th minute Marcella Martinez's (FR, Poway, CA) would allude the Owl keeper and roll into the net to tie the game once again. The Owls would grab the lead again in the 76th minute as Nadeau would blast a shot from deep, and place it beautifully over the outstretched hands of the Gator keeper, putting UMPI up 3-2. It would prove to be a game winning goal as the Owls would fend off the efforts of Pine Manor to advance to the finals on Sunday.
The loss eliminates Pine Manor from the tournament. UMPI will meet the #1 seed SUNY Canton at 1 PM Sunday afternoon. The winner of that matchup will be named the ACAA Champion.
GAME 2 – MEN - #3 PINE MANOR vs. #2 SUNY CANTON
In a physical, fast-paced first half, the only score came in the 21st minute. A crossing pass was deflected by the Pine Manor Gator and multiple players collided while the ball trickled towards the center of the field. CUNY Canton's Josh Geller (SO, Monroe, NY) was able to take advantage and put the ball in the net. Both teams had opportunities as the Gators held a slight 10-8 lead in shots. The teams combined for ten fouls in the first half.
Pine Manor would answer back in the second half. In the 52nd minute Cesar Garcia (FR, El Paso, TX) let loose a long pass up the left side. With the keeper charging out to try and gather it in, Giovanni Valenzuela (FR, El Paso, TX) would win the race to the ball and fire a shot passed the keeper for a goal, tying the score at one. In the 63rd minute Pine Manor would take their first lead of the game. A crossing pass was deflected by the Roo defense, and the ball settled in the middle of the field for Samuel Solano (FR, El Paso, TX), who drove the ball into the back of the net. With time winding down Valenzuela would get a steal and seal the victory with a shot that crossed to the upper right hand corner of the net, giving Pine Manor a 3-1 victory.
With the loss SUNY Canton will play in the Consolation game at 11 AM on Sunday. Pine Manor will advance to the Championship game at 3 PM on Sunday.
GAME 3 – MEN - #4 UMPI vs. #1 ALFRED STATE
The Owls got on the board early as Cody Blair (SO, Ashland, ME) got loose on a breakaway and fired a shot passed the keeper in the fifth minute. Despite opportunities, Alfred State was unable to convert in the early going, as UMPI keeper Matthew Manter (JR, Caribou, ME) would collect saves on a couple of good looks. The Owls would get another breakaway opportunity in the 14th minute. Derek Healy (SR, Hanover, MA) was streaking up the left hand side with a defender bearing down on him. Healy was able to lead Blair with a beautiful pass and Blair was able to convert on his second goal of the game. The Pioneers would finally answer back in the 22nd minute, when Brandon Holley (JR, Livionia, NY) would find an opportunity, front and center, and knock it into the right side of the net passed the outstretched UMPI keeper. Alfred State would dominate possession in the rest of the first half, outshooting the Owls 20-5, but UMPI would hold their ground, and keep the 2-1 lead at intermission.
Alfred State would continue to dominate in the second half, putting enormous pressure on the Owls defense. UMPI would hold its ground however, and remain in the lead until the final minutes. In the 87th minute a foul would set the Pioneers up with a direct kick in which Nick Donner (SO, Lancaster, NY) would float a beautiful pass into the center of the box. Kory Zimmer (JR, Geneseo, NY) would head the ball into the net to tie it. Seconds later the Pioneers would find themselves in a eerily similar situation, this time Donner's kick would be met by a scrum of players, and Tyler Landries (JR, Angelica, NY) would punch the ball in the net for the go-ahead goal. The Owls had little time on the clock to try and put together an attack, and would fall by a score of 3-2.
The win puts Alfred Sate in the Championship tomorrow at 1 PM. They will face Pine Manor in that game. The Owls will play in the consolation game at 11 AM against SUNY Canton.