The Geneseo men's soccer team finished its long six-game road trip with a 1-1 tie at Houghton College on Sept. 16 and a 2-0 loss at Hobart College on Saturday Sept. 19. The Knights are now 3-1-3 this season. "The road games were tough for us,” junior midfielder Matt D'Amico said. "After six in a row, we were just tired against Hobart and started falling apart in the ties. We should have gotten a couple of wins, but that's soccer."
D'Amico tallied his third goal of the season against Houghton on a shot from the right side of the penalty box in the 57th minute. Fellow junior midfielder Mike Skrzypczyk was credited with the assist. This is D'Amico's first season as a full-time starter and he has already scored more goals in seven games this season than he did in 26 games as an underclassman. He is reluctant, however to call too much attention to himself.
"My game has developed a lot but I think our team is really coming together this year," he said. "We had a couple of issues last year, but this time we're more of a family."
D’Amico explained that playing a bigger role on the field involves taking on more responsibility in mentoring the underclassmen as well.
"For the freshmen and sophomores, I'm trying to take on a bigger role and be more of a role model,” D'Amico said. "[I’m] always staying out of trouble and doing the little leadership things that I looked up to when I was an underclassmen."
The Knights began the week with a tie against Houghton. Despite outshooting the Highlanders 17-13 and having a 5-3 advantage in saves, one goal was not enough to emerge victorious from the match. It was the third straight game that the Knights played two overtime periods and had to settle for a tie.
The team appeared to be outmatched at the end of its road trip against Hobart, getting outshot 15-6 overall. The Statesmen scored in the 42nd and 50th minutes to improve to 5-1 on the season. After starting off the season with three consecutive wins, Geneseo has either tied or lost in each subsequent game.
The ties and losses have been frustrating for the Knights, but the team finally has some home games to look forward to. Eight of the team's 12 remaining matches this season are at home, starting with a three-game home stretch against SUNY Fredonia on Friday Sept. 25, Buffalo State on Saturday Sept. 26 and Nazareth College on Tuesday Sept. 29. Two of those opponents—Nazareth and Fredonia—have combined for just one win all season long. That is enough to give D'Amico and the Knights plenty of confidence going forward.
"For home games, we can get comfortable playing on the field that we normally practice on and play in front of a lot of fans," he said.