Hamilton, N.Y. – In a hard-fought battle at Beyer-Small ’76 Field, the Navy men’s soccer team faced a disappointing end to their season, succumbing to a 2-0 defeat against Colgate in the quarterfinal round of the 2023 Patriot League Tournament. Despite a commanding 16-5 shot advantage, Navy was unable to convert opportunities, as Aidan Davock’s brace secured the victory for the fourth-seeded Colgate on Saturday evening.

The Midshipmen conclude the season with a 6-8-5 overall record, while the Raiders improve to 8-9-2, earning a spot in the semifinal round against top-seeded Boston University on Tuesday.

The opening minutes saw intense action, with Navy’s A.J. Schuetz narrowly missing a shot wide left in the third minute. However, it was Colgate that seized the lead at 14′, as Aidan Wright delivered a precise cross into the box, allowing Aidan Davock to head the ball past Navy’s junior goalkeeper Pierce Holbrook.

Navy pressed to equalize, with sophomore Andrew Schug’s header narrowly missing the target in the 19th minute. The Raiders’ goalkeeper situation took an unexpected turn when starting keeper Oliver Townend suffered an injury, leading to Andrew Cooke taking the reins. Cooke, with a pair of crucial saves, ensured Colgate’s halftime lead.

The second half saw Navy continuing to push for a goal, with junior Connor Walcott’s long-range shot testing Cooke in the 50th minute. Despite a series of attempts by Navy, including a diving save by Holbrook and defensive blocks by Colgate, they were unable to breach the Raiders’ defense.

A late-game defensive lapse in the 90th minute allowed Davock to exploit an opening, securing his second goal of the game and sealing the 2-0 victory for Colgate. Holbrook made two saves in his final game of the season, while Cooke, alongside Townend, combined for the shutout with four saves.

Reflecting on the match, Navy’s Head Coach Tim O’Donohue acknowledged the team’s solid performance but lamented the lack of timely scoring. O’Donohue expressed pride in the team’s resilience throughout the season and extended gratitude to the six seniors, who concluded their Navy careers on the field that night.

In terms of historical matchups, Colgate now leads the all-time series with Navy at 16-15-6. The loss snapped Navy’s four-game undefeated streak over the Raiders. Additionally, it marked Navy’s first postseason loss to Colgate, bringing their Patriot League Tournament record to 2-1-1 against the Raiders.

As the Navy men’s soccer team bids farewell to the 2023 season, the six-man senior class, including David Jackson, Jason Aoyama, Cristian Coelho, Jake Granados, Baba Kallie, and captain Zach Wagner, leaves behind a legacy with a commendable 29-21-15 overall record over the last four seasons.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

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