The Rams (0-4-1, 0-2-0 MEC) fell on the road Thursday afternoon on the road against the Blue Knights (2-2-0, 1-1-0 MEC) by a 4-1 score.
Early on, the Rams had trouble containing the Blue Knights’ potent attack. At the 4:33 mark in the first half, midfielder Benjamin Cancian lit up the scoreboard with his goal off of a corner kick. It was the second touch off of the corner kick from right in front of the net, as the Rams’ defense was unable to clear the ball out of harms’ way. The Blue Knights’ senior midfielders Thibaut Bourrier and Jeremy Fricker both assited on the play.
Just like that, the Blue Knights had an early 1-0 lead. The Rams had to find a quick answer to get back into the game.
That answer came from Rams’ senior forward Jeff Kammerer, who scored his first goal of the season at the 20:48 mark off of a nice pass from freshman goalkeeper Jacob Dougal. The Blue Knights did not know what hit them, as the Rams scored in an unusual and quick way.
With the game now tied at 1-1, it was the Blue Knights’ turn to form a counter attack of its own, and did they ever. In just over a three-minute span after Kammerer’s tying goal, the Blue Knights recorded two goals of their own.
The first of these came once again off of the foot of Cancian, who received an excellent pass again from Fricker in the heart of the Rams’ defense. Once Cancian got the ball, he weaved his way through the box and sent a shot to the far left post past Dougal at the 22:28 mark to help the Blue Knights regain the lead with a 2-1 score.
Almost immediately after Cancian’s goal, junior midfielder Antoine Rivera extended the Blue Knights’ lead to 3-1 with a beautiful shot from the top left corner of the box to the far post and in the goal at the 23:51 mark. Sophomore forward Jacob Wischmeier assisted on the play.
After the momentum had been on their side, the Rams were shell-shocked and not able to recover from the two quick blows that the Blue Knights threw them.
Rivera really let the flood gates open for the Blue Knights with his second goal of the match just after halftime at the 48:55 point in the game, as he blasted a line drive off of a nicely-timed line-drive pass from midfielder Matthias Klasen into the back of the net and past Dougal to give the Blue Knights a 4-1 lead.
A shot by Kammerer at the 75:34 point in the game hit the post, but did not go in, as the Rams were never able to mount a serious comeback attempt.
Kammerer and senior forward/midfielder Justin Marshall were the only sources of offense for the Rams, as they generated five of the six total shot attempts for the game.
Dougal did record seven saves for the Rams in goal, as the Blue Knights launched 10 shots right at him on goal and 18 total shots for the game.
Junior goalkeeper Daniel McNicholas of the Blue Knights posted one save off of a shot from Marshall, but saw relatively little action the whole game.
The Rams were not able to relax at all defensively, as the Blue Knights were able to set up 12 corner kick opportunities, as they were able to get key deflections off of the Rams’ defenders to set up great scoring opportunities.
Cancian finished the day with two goals, while Fricker posted two assists for the Blue Knights.
On Sunday, the Rams will be looking to bounce back after this performance and record its first win of the season when they take on Charleston at home Sunday afternoon for RAACE Day in Shepherdstown at 1 p.m.
Anthony Bracken is the Sports Editor of The Picket. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org