WATERVILLE, Maine—Junior Jared Reeber scored what proved to be the game winner in the 35th minute as the Bates men's soccer team edged Thomas College 1-0 in a non-conference game played under the lights Wednesday night on the Terriers' Smith Field.
"It wasn't a vintage 90 minutes but it's right around exam time at Bates," Bobcat head coach Tyler Sheikh said. "Our guys answered a lot of questions a very good Thomas side asked of them."
The Bobcats improve to 8-4 overall, serving the Terriers (10-3) just their third loss this season. Bates earned its seventh shutout this fall.
At 34:01 into the match, Reeber (Mount Kisco, N.Y.) placed his shot just under the crossbar after a feed from junior Liam Goldfarb (New York, N.Y.) to give the Bobcats the 1-0 advantage. It was Reeber's first goal of his career. Bates' senior keeper Robbie Montanaro (Belmont, Mass.) stopped all four shots he faced to earn the shutout in goal.
Thomas' best scoring chance of the first half came in the seventh minute. The Terriers lofted a corner kick right out in front of the goal mouth, but the cross was punched away by Montanaro before any Thomas player could capitalize. Late in the first half, junior Peder Bakken (Seattle, Wash.) had two just missed scoring chances for the Bobcats. The first came in the 37th minute and was just punched over the crossbar by the Thomas goalie. The second came in the 43rd minute, when Bakken blasted a shot off the left post.
The second half proved scoreless. In the 73rd minute, one of the Terriers launched a pass from behind the midline to a teammate on the far left side. He had a one-on-one with Montanaro, who came sprinting out to play the ball. He dove on top of the ball, but got knocked down in the process, and it slid away, but was cleared out of the zone by the collapsing Bates defense.
The Bobcats came close to making it a 2-0 game in the 80th minute. Junior Beaufils Kimpolo-Pene (Bronx, N.Y.) drilled a hard shot on cage, but Thomas' goalie Jonathan Dutka reacted quickly to knock it away. He finished with seven saves for the Terriers. Bates finished with a 16-8 advantage in shots and an 8-1 lead in corners.
"Getting through out of conference play not conceding a goal is big for us as we head into our final three NESCAC contests with everything to play for," said Sheikh.
The Bobcats are back in action on Wednesday, Oct. 17, when they travel to take on Bowdoin in a NESCAC match at 3 p.m.