BME Ballers Back to .500

BME BallersAfter dropping the season opener, the BME soccer team reorganized and recovered. Building on their second half improvements from the first game, the Ballers notched their first win of the season to bring their record to 1-1-0.

With a strong defense and an aggressive attack, the Ballers downed the Minesweepers 4-0, with keeper Hans van Oostrom logging his first shutout of the season. Two first half goals by Wilton Williams and Phillip Jannotti were complimented by two second half goals by Joerg Matthias and Krishanu Mathur to secure the win for BME.

The BME Ballers next face table-toppers MBA's Kick It on Tuesday, February 7 at 7:00 PM at the Southwest Fields, field 4. The BME Ballers will play every Tuesday at 7:00 PM on the Southwest Fields for the next three weeks.

The strongest challenges from the Minesweepers came in the first few minutes after the initial whistle of the game, where they were able to get off the first three of their five shots on goal for the game. None of the shots were that dangerous, and keeper Hans van Oostrom was able to handle them comfortably. Then, the tide shifted for the remainder of the game, as the Ballers solidified in defense, allowing the offense to go to work. Early shots by Jamal Lewis, Aditya Asokan and Eric Franca severely tested the opposing keeper, forcing a couple of spectacular saves. With even the defense overlapping to force the offensive issue, with shots by Art Bautista-Hardman and Tom Cowan, the pressure finally broke the stalemate when Phillip Jannotti pushed a ball through for Wilton Williams who gently rolled the ball over the keeper to the far post to open the scoring for the game. The Minesweepers did get another opportunity, with a dangerously close range free kick, but a miskick when it was taken defused the situation. The Ballers then pressed the attack again, which was finally rewarded with a penetrating run by Phillip Jannotti into the box, who's shot took a slight deflection off a defender to wrong foot the keeper and score BME's second goal. With that the Ballers took a 2-0 lead into half time.

BME Ballers pressure on the Minesweepers' defense was the hallmark of the second half. With most of the action concentrated in the Minesweepers' half, BME had several good scoring opportunities, most notably a 30-yard worm-burner by Joerg Matthias that skimmed inches past the right post and a 20-yard shot from Wilton Williams to the right upper-90 barely pushed over the crossbar by the Minesweepers' keeper. The Ballers were also able to earn several corner kicks, forcing the Minesweepers to keep all their players in the box to stave off disaster. However, BME was able to break through again on another long range shot by Joerg Matthias that found its mark to up the score line to 3-0. Meanwhile, the defense, anchored by the old-guard of Walt O'Dell, Art Bautista-Hardman, and Hans van Oostrom, proved that age and guile still held a small edge over youth and skill, as the Minesweepers were only able to mount two offensive runs that both ended in perfunctory shots easily handled by the Ballers' keeper. To cap off the evening, Aditya Asokan and Jamal Lewis, who, though staying off the score sheet, provided solid and creative midfield play, combined to stretch the defense so Aditya Asokan could feed through a perfect pass to Krishanu Mathur, who beat the opposing keeper one-on-one, to tally the final goal for BME for the 4-0 win.

The Ballers hope to build on this win, and play a strong game in looking for a second win against the MBA's Kick It next Tuesday, February 7.

If you are BME grad student, faculty or staff, and are interested in playing, please contact Eric Franca at ericfranca@gmail.com.

Below are the division standings as of Wednesday, February 1.

Team SR W L T F/D WPCT PTS-AVG GB PF PA DIFF STRK TOT PTS
1 MBA's Kick It 5 2 0 0 0/0 1.000 1 - 6 2 4 Won 2 2
2 Bicuspid Futbol... 5 1 1 0 0/0 .500 0.5 1 7 6 1 Loss 1 1
3 BME Ballers 5 1 1 0 0/0 .500 0.5 1 7 5 2 Win 1 1
4 Minesweepers 5 0 2 0 0/0 .000 0 2 0 7 -7 Loss 2 0

Key By Column: Sportsmanship Rating, Win, Loss, Tie, Forfeits/Defaults, Winning %, Points Average, Games Behind, Points (Goals) For, Points (Goals) Against, Differential, Streak, Total Points.

Points are awarded 1 for a win, 0.5 for a tie, and 0 for a loss. BME Ballers occupy third place due to the head-to-head loss to Bicuspid Futbol.