Courtesy Vermont Sports Information
ALBANY, N.Y. –– Vermont’s run to defend its America East title fell short on Wednesday night with a 2-0 loss at Albany in the semifinal round. The Catamounts still have a chance to make the NCAA Tournament with an at-large bid.
The Catamounts drop to 13-6-1 on the season while Albany improves to 11-5-2 overall.
The first half was a defensive battle as only a combined 10 shots were taken. UVM nearly struck first in the 27th minute. Brian Wright tossed a long throw-in from the end of Albany’s bench. After a pair of Catamounts headed the pass in front of the net, Bernard Yeboah leaped up for a header of his own, but the senior’s shot deflected off the right post. The Great Danes booted away the loose ball to eliminate any chance for a Vermont rebound.
In the 29th minute, the Great Danes got on the scoreboard when Afonso Pinheiro tallied his 11th goal of the year. Bernardo Mattos passed a ball into the front of the box where Pinheiro chipped a high shot on net and it came down just under the crossbar.
Wright attempted to even the score three minutes later. He ripped a shot past the Albany defense but the ball sailed too wide.
As the clock ticked down towards halftime, Elliot Maker dribbled through the Albany defense and touched a shot through the legs of a defender, but Great Dane keeper Danny Vitiello (3 saves) scooped up the shot.
Carlos Clark added an insurance goal for Albany in the 66th minute. Clark dribbled parallel with the top of the 18-yard box, then fired a low shot past a diving Aron Runarsson (3 saves)
In the 70th minute, the Catamounts had another chance to score a goal with a corner kick. Jon Arnar Barðdal bent a kick into the box where Yeboah was on the other end to line a shot, but the attempt rolled too wide.
Vermont will have to wait until Monday (Nov. 14) for the NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Selection Show at 1 p.m. to see if a tournament bid is coming its way. The selection show will be streamed at NCAA.com.