Richmond’s Isaac Cappan wind up to kick the ball past St. Dom’s Ben Gosslin during Saturday’s soccer game in Auburn.
AUBURN — Richmond was stuck in a stalemate for most of the game against the St Dom’s boys’ soccer team until Justin Vachon caught a deflected pass and ripped the game-winning goal into the top right corner of the goal, giving Richmond a 1-0 win Saturday afternoon.
Vachon’s goal came with 17:13 remaining in the game and was only the Bobcats’ second shot on goal of the second half. In the first half, both teams traded shots, with St. Dom’s young squad racking up eight.
“I’m really happy with how we played,” Saints head coach Martin Bressler said. “Most of our core are sophomores and our goalkeepers are freshmen, so we are going to take this moving forward and just continue to get better.”
The Saints used two goalkeepers in the game, with Matt Gosselin facing the majority of shots in the second half.
“This season they’re battling it out,” Bressler said. “They know that by next year they have to battle for the job and the other will be a field player.”
In the second half, the Bobcats’ offense got off the ground, sending four shots at goal, one of them being the game-winner. When asked what he told his team at halftime, Richmond head coach Peter Gardner said it was all about patience.
“I think we needed to settle down and make a slight change to get some more action in the middle of the field,” Gardner said. “We came out in the second half and we did some nice things … I told them to just settle themselves down.”
With 18 minutes remaining, Richmond was attacking on the Saints’ half, when a deflected shot fell to the foot of Vachon. Vachon scored on a shot to the top-right corner, which subsequently led to the Bobcats falling back into heavy defense.
“A couple mental errors and tired plays led to the goal, and that was the game,” Bressler said.
After the goal, the St. Dom’s offense turned it on, sprinting up both sides of the field for every chance they could get. With about nine minutes remaining, a foul was called on the Richmond end which led to Saints striker Alex Roy getting into it with Richmond goalkeeper Trystin Shea. The second half was filled with physical play.
“When they make a mistake, their heads go down,” Gardner said. “They sometimes lose focus on what they’re trying to do and then it just turns into a street battle. I’d much rather lose the game than push and shove each other.”
The free kick was high, and even with a couple of chances in the final two minutes, the Class C Saints couldn’t penetrate goal, and fell to last year’s Class D semifinalist. Bressler was proud of his team’s performance.
“To hold a team like this, regardless of class, to this kind of result is great,” he said.
St. Dom’s Matt Gagnon juggles the ball as Richmond’s Ford Strout pushes in at Saturday’s soccer game in Auburn.St. Dom’s Michee Kikobo brings the ball down the field as Richmond’sAndrew Vachon keeps in his heels during Saturday’s soccer game in Auburn.