On Saturday afternoon in New York City, Cornell men’s soccer beat out Columbia 2-1 in overtime to break a three-game losing streak and finish the season with an 11-6 record.
After a scoreless first half, the Lions initially took the lead with a goal in the 58th minute — but the hosts failed to tally any more goals.
“We were slightly cagey and tentative in the first half,” said head coach John Smith. “But ultimately kicked into gear in the second half once we went a goal behind.”
Junior midfielder John Scearce tied up the game in the 73rd minute. Sophomore midfielder Tyler Bagley assisted the goal. Tied up, the two teams continued the battle into overtime.
“We responded unbelievably well once we conceded the goal,” Smith said. “And I thought we ultimately deserved the win.”
And a win the Red ultimately captured — sophomore forward Charles Touche scored in the 97th minute, sending the Red home winners with his eighth goal and fifth game-winning goal of the season.
Throughout the game, the Red tallied 17 shots, nine of which were on goal, outplaying Columbia’s 13 shots, seven of which were on goal. Junior goalkeeper Ryan Shellow made six saves for the Red.
This was the Red’s winningest season since 2012. Just two years ago, Cornell men’s soccer won only one game — 10 fewer than this season. Smith attributes the program’s improvement all to the players.
“They are the ones who made the necessary sacrifices to help steer the program in the right direction,” Smith said. “They have learned to push their emotional and physical boundaries, and in turn, their performances on the field have reflected that.”
“There are definitely exciting times ahead for Cornell men’s soccer.”