Myers’ late goal lifts Kenyon into quarterfinal
GAMBIER, Ohio—Sophomore Henry Myers' shot from the top of the box with 20 seconds left in regulation found its mark and gave the Kenyon College Lords soccer team a 3-2 victory over the Tufts University Jumbos, the defending national champions. More importantly, the Friday win at Mavec Field thrust Kenyon into the quarterfinal round of the NCAA Division III Tournament for the first time since 1996.
With about 40 seconds left and the score knotted at 2-2, Kenyon senior Jeremiah Barnes had a throw into the box from the right sideline. Tufts eventually cleared the ball out, but Kenyon freshman David Andersonregained control and sent a pass back into the box, where it was met by junior teammate Jordan Glassman. As Glassman was trying to gain control of the pass, a Tufts defender tipped the ball away from him. The ball trickled out to Myers, who launched the game-winner into the left corner of the Jumbos' net. It was Myers' fifth goal of the season and his third in five postseason games.
The electrifying victory moved Kenyon's record to 19-1-1, giving the Lords a share of the program's single-season record for wins alongside the 1990 team that finished 19-1-0.
Kenyon now moves on to face Calvin College, a 1-0 Friday winner over Franklin and Marshall College. The Lords and Knights both return to Mavec Field on Saturday for a 1 p.m. quarterfinal showdown with a spot in the NCAA Final Four on the line.
Prior to Friday's dramatic finish, it was the Jumbos who drew first blood in the first-ever meeting between these two teams. In the game's 15th minute, Tufts senior Rui Pinherio sent in a well-struck corner kick to the mouth of the Kenyon goal. As the ball descended, junior Nathan Majumder got a head on it and directed it past Kenyon goalkeeper Sam Clougher.
A little more than eight minutes later, Kenyon answered. The Lords drew a foul in the Jumbos' box, resulting in a penalty kick being awarded. Barnes took the honors and blasted his shot by Tufts goalkeeper Scott Greenwood to even the game at 1-1.
Kenyon kept the pressure on and broke through again, just 96 seconds after first scoring. This time around, Barnes uncorked a long throw-in from the left sideline. Myers went up near the left post and headed it backward, toward the right post. The ball took one bounce and sophomore Oliver Wynn launched himself, like a missile, at it. His dive was timed perfectly and he headed the ball into the right corner of the Jumbos' goal, lifting the Lords to a 2-1 edge.
That score held up through the half. When the teams returned for the second 45-minute session, Tufts showed its worth as the defending champs. For the majority of the half, the Jumbos dominated possession and put the Lords on their heels.
In the 71st minute, the pressure finally got to Kenyon as Tufts scored the equalizer. Junior Gaston Becherano ran up the right sideline and delivered a pass into the box for Majumder, who slipped past a Kenyon defender. Majumder then turned quickly and fired in his second goal of the game and his 11th goal of the season.
Kenyon wound up with a slight 15-13 advantage in shots, while Tufts held a big 6-1 difference in corner kicks. Clougher ended up making four saves for Kenyon and Greenwood made three saves for Tufts, which finished its season with an 11-5-3 record.