BEVERLY, Mass. – Endicott sophomore midfielder Bobby Durben (Stow, Mass.) delivered yet another memorable moment on Homecoming Weekend as his last second, right-footed blast at an empty net gave the Gulls a dramatic 1-0 victory over Nichols.
Durben chased down a loose ball that crossed midfield with only 10 seconds left in the second half. After avoiding Bison goalie Brendan Hamilton (North Attleboro, Mass.), who had left the net to make a play on the ball, Durben found himself with an wide open net. His long-range shot hit the left post back into the field of play but a quickly approaching Nichols defender saw the ball rebound off his body and into the back of the net as time expired.
Durben’s goal, his first of the season, was reminiscent of Endicott’s last-second, double overtime win over Curry one year ago when Durben’s long throw in set up a game-winning goal by then senior Bryan Lee with 0.4 seconds left on the clock.
Nichols outshot Endicott 15-13 in this match with several high-quality opportunities to score, but the Bison could not put one past Gulls freshman goalie Aaron Kanter (Medfield, Mass.). Kanter made five saves between the posts to improve his 2011 goalie record to 5-2-3 with a 0.77 goals against average.
Nichols keeper Brendan Hamilton made four saves for the Bison, but took the loss dropping to 8-3-1 on the year.
In the first half, the Bison had two chances to get on the scoreboard. In the 31st minute, Fred Willard’s (Webster, Mass.) long corner kick found senior defender David Johnson (Canterbury, Conn.) whose shot was saved by Kanter. With under a minute to go in the opening stanza, the Bison nearly went into halftime up a goal when Brendan Whitson (Auburn, Mass.) avoided an approaching Kanter and sent a cross to freshman forward Jonathan Silva (Framingham, Mass.) whose shot rolled just wide left of the net.
In the second half, Endicott looked to break the scoreless tie when freshman forward Alex Jorge (Billerica, Mass.) missed on a close range shot attempt but sophomore forward Alex Elia (Somers, Conn.) followed with a blast that sailed wide right.
Kanter made another crucial save, approaching Whitson who attempted a shot while breaking up the middle near the box in the 60th minute.
The Gulls have remained unbeaten in last six games (5-0-1) and are now 5-6-3 (3-2-2 CCC) after starting the year 0-5. Nichols had their four-match win streak snapped with the loss and currently stand at 9-4-1 (4-3-1 CCC).
Both teams return to the pitch on Monday, October 17th for non-conference matches. Endicott travels to Suffolk for a 6:00 pm match while Nichols hosts Albertus Magnus at 3:30 pm.