BEVERLY, Mass. – The Endicott men's soccer team shut out the defending Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) Champion Nichols College Bison, 2-0, Friday night at Endicott Stadium in the Gulls' home CCC opener.
With the win, Endicott defeated Nichols for the first time since 2012 and improved to 4-1-1 (2-0-0 CCC), while the Bison dropped to 4-4-0 overall and 1-1-0 in conference play.
Senior forward Abdulla Al Khalifa (Riffa, Bahrain) netted his team-leading sixth goal of the season in the 36th minute on a feed from senior midfielder Shintaroh Itoh (Nerima, Tokyo, Japan) and sophomore forward Andrew Hymson (Waldwick, N.J.) to give the Gulls a 1-0 advantage at the half.
Itoh converted a penalty kick just a minute into the second stanza and the Gulls hung on as junior goalkeeper Nick Weinstein (Trumbull, Conn.) posted his third consecutive shutout.
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE
- Today's match saw Weinstein post his fourth shutout of the season (third-consecutive) and make five saves, tied for his most in a match this season.
- Today's match was Endicott's first shutout of Nichols since a 1-0 win at home on Oct. 3, 2009.
- Al Khalifa has scored at least one goal for the Gulls in each of the past four matches.
- Both of Itoh's goals this season have come on penalty kicks.
- Itoh now has assists in back-to-back game and paces the team with three assists.
FOR THE FOES
- Senior goalkeeper Alex Geas (Somers, Conn.) made six saves in the losing effort.
- Junior back David Melanson (Simbury, Conn.) tallied three shots and sophomore forward/midfielder Paul Sickinger (Tyngsboro, Mass.) had two shots on goal for the Bison.
- Today's match saw the Gulls take the all-time lead in the series with Nichols, 10-9-1, dating back prior to the 2001 season.
- The Gulls beat Nichols tonight for the first time since a 2-1 victory in Dudley, Mass. on Oct. 16, 2012.
Endicott (4-1-1) travels to Coast Guard for a non-conference matchup against the Bears at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 22.
Nichols College (4-4-0) visits Daniel Webster on Wednesday, September 23 for a non-conference tilt at 4:00 p.m.