WILLIAMSTOWN, MASS. – A goal in the top right corner in the 77th minute by Tufts' midfielder Travis van Brewer lifted the visiting Jumbos to a 3-2 win over host Williams this afternoon on Cole Field. With the win, Tufts improved to (2-0-0/1-0-0 NESCAC), while the Ephs are now (0-1-1/0-1-0 NESCAC).
Eph forward Demian Gass got off the first shot of the game in the second minute when he beat a Tufts defender and fired a shot on goal, but it was saved by Tufts' goalie Gavin Tasker. Tufts' first threat came in the eighth minute when a dangerous deep cross to the far corner of the goal had to be headed away.
Tufts opened the scoring in the 28th minute when Bret Rojas setup Max Jacobs with a pass into the box that Jacobs put into the top left corner. Williams goalkeeper Teddy Rader stretched and got a hand to the ball, but was unable to keep it out of his net.
The Ephs leveled the score at one in the 36th minute when Demian Gass finished off a feed from Rick Usami. Usami sent the ball from the middle of the field down the left flank to Gass, who brought it all the way to the edge of the pitch, where he pulled back and, from a narrow angle, shot and scored in the far upper right corner.
Williams began to control the flow of the game a bit and in the 41st minute Jake Saudek put the Ephs in front 2-1 when he headed a corner kick from Nick Ranieri into the bottom right corner of the goal.
The Ephs took a 2-1 lead into the halftime intermission.
Tufts started the second half strong out of the gate, keeping the pressure up until they tied the score at 2 in the 66th minute when Calvin Aroh headed home a corner kick that came in off the boot of Travis van Brewer. Williams tried to push forward, taking on two shots in just three minutes, but they both flew off-target and the Ephs were unable to gain traction.
In the 77th minute, van Brewer settled matters when he was set up for the game winner on a pass from Eric Kinderman. He scored in the upper right corner on a long shot outside of the 18-yard box. Williams's Teddy Rader got fingertips to the ball, but was unable to stop it.
The rest of the game saw little action, with Williams unable to break past the Tufts defense. At the 90th minute, though, Williams' Gass found himself 1v1 with the goalkeeper, but he shot just wide of the post.
Eph head coach Sullivan explained the team's goals moving forward: "We are continuing to try and develop the finishing mentality. Closing games out—that's a hard thing to do to any college soccer team… It's still early in the season, and so we are trying to discover some depth and consistency and so we saw a lot of players take a big step forward today. Now we have to do that with the lead as a team."
Most of the action in the game occurred in the midfield of the field as the two teams combined managed just seven shots on goal.
Tufts' netminder Gavin Tasker and Eph goalie Teddy Rader each recorded one save on the day.
Next up for the Ephs is a road contest Wednesday night in Troy, N.Y. where they will face RPI, while Tufts will next see action next Saturday when they host Brandeis at 7:00 PM.