Trailblazers squander first half lead, draw with SUNY Poly 3-3 in season debut

Trailblazers squander first half lead, draw with SUNY Poly 3-3 in season debut

North Adams, MA- It was a tale of two halves at Shewcraft Field this afternoon as the MCLA Men's Soccer team tallied three first half goals before allowing visiting SUNY Polytechnic to score three in the closing half as the Trailblazers drew 3-3 with the Wildcats in the season opener for both clubs.  Neither team could net the game winner in overtime as they are both 0-0-1 on the season.

MCLA started fast and furious in the opening half controlling play.  Junior forward Anthony Basile took a through pass from Kwadwo Kusi and easily beat SUNY keeper Jess Yanarella for a 1-0 lead in the 15th minute.  Just 45 seconds later, senior Tyler Vona drilled a shot that deflected off a Wildcat defender for a quick 2-0 advantage with still thirty minutes til halftime.

Junior Dylan Pereira added the third marker of the half controlling an Edward Boateng pass and slipping it past Yanarella and MCLA led 3-0 heading into halftime.

Needing a boost, SUNY Poly quickly got one just 50 seconds into the closing half when Grant Calogero booted one past MCLA's Kamron Anderson giving the Wildcat sideline some life.  They continued the pressure and finally got within a goal in the 73rd minute as Marco Batista would net his first of the season making it 3-2 in favor of the Trailblazers.

The lead would be short lived however, as the Wildcats would pull even when Nick McBride slipped a ball into the lower left corner tying the game at 3-3.  Neither team mounted much of a threat through the remainder of regulation and they headed to overtime.

In the first extra session, MCLA got off a pair of shots compared to just one for SUNY, however none of them threatened to find the back of the net.  In the second OT, both teams applied some pressure.  MCLA had a great chance when Basile sent a cross towards Oscar Castro, however it was just out of his reach and the deadlock remained.

Anderson stopped four shots in goal for MCLA while Yanarella collected ten saves for the Wildcats.  

MCLA held a 21-17 shot advantage and a 5-4 edge in corners.  

MCLA is back in action on Sunday when they travel to Western Connecticut.