Upstate Update - Week 3
By Mani Tafari
The Upstate Update brings you up to speed on Division III men's soccer in the "Upstate" New York region, home to the SUNYAC, Liberty League, and Empire 8. Several key matches will be recapped each week along with a more in-depth look at a Game of the Week.
Game of the Week
RPI (2-3-1) at Potsdam State (4-2-1)
Saturday, September 15
The excitement of pre-season is gone. The Freshmen have transformed themselves into college players and Seniors are beginning to understand that this is not a never-ending ride.
Coach Adam Parker has transformed the Bears into a very competitive program over the past decade. Potsdam are consistently challenging in the brutal SUNYAC and have moved from strength to strength over the last few seasons.
Veteran coach Adam Clinton has been producing quality teams for the better part of two decades with RPI. After a sub-par 2017, coach Clinton and RPI were looking to engineer a comeback season and once again solidify themselves as an elite Liberty League team.
The Season Thus Far
RPI opened the season with two losses before staging a recovery and entered the game on a mini-run of 2 wins and a tie against a strong Oneonta.
The first forty-five minutes were a back and forth battle with both teams fighting to dominate possession. An evenly matched first half ended scoreless with the visitors having a slight 4-3 edge in shots. Things heated up in the second half and the Engineers had a chance to take the lead from the penalty spot. The shot got by the Bear goalkeeper, but the Bear crossbar saved the day and the score line remained 0-0.
The Bears were presented with several golden opportunities to score during the remainder of regulation, but a good RPI goalkeeper and less than ruthless finishing kept the game scoreless at the end of regulation. The game headed to overtime where Potsdam junior forward Alejandro Callejas scored his fifth goal of the season and finished the game in favor of the home team.
A Callejas dagger goal was the difference between these two teams in a game that RPI outshot the opponent 16-12 and edged the corner kick battle 7-2.
Potsdam edged their visitors in the only statistic that truly mattered and can be proud of a very deserved 1-0 win.
4-2-1 Potsdam are looking set for what will surely be a challenging league schedule in the SUNYAC.
RPI are now 2-3-1 and will look for a positive result as they host Bard in the league opener on the weekend.
Around the Region
Cortland (5-0-2) 1, Hobart (1-4-1) 0 - Looks like a league championship is the only avenue the Statesmen; they must win the league in order to dance.
Plattsburgh (2-3-2) 2, Clarkson (5-1-0) 0 - Clarkson comes back to earth as coach Parker enjoys a positive homecoming.
Cortland (5-0-2) 3, St. Lawrence (3-1-1) 2 (OT) - An instant classic played out in Canton. The Red Dragons make a statement to the region and the nation with a classy win.
Rochester (6-0-0) 5, Alfred (2-6-0) 1 - The Saxons continue to play an incredibly tough schedule.
Brockport 5-2-0) 4, Elmira (1-6-0) 0 - Brockport will be in the mix competing for league dominance yet again in 2018.
Grove City (5-0-2) 2, Fredonia (2-3-1) 0 - Tough start for this former SUNYAC powerhouse program.
D’Youville (0-4-1) 1, St. John Fisher (0-6-1) 1 (2OT) - Good result for the Spartans who have been playing a very competitive schedule.
Team of the Week
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