Kentfield, CA - The College of Marin Men's Soccer Team did not get much time to get their feet wet in their opening game of the 2016 season. Visiting Chabot College jumped out to a quick two goal lead just as the game was getting underway and added a third before the half hour mark. Despite the early deficit, the Mariners did not give up by any measure.
After steadying the ball movement and communication, the Mariners had a pair of success spurts into the attacking third leading to real chances to find the back of the net. In the 30th minute Jason Diaz was pulled down in the box, earning a penalty opportunity for College of Marin. Sophomore defender Henry Mata calmly struck left and low past the keeper for the team's first goal of the season, cutting the deficit to 3-1.
The Mariners carried that momentum to the start of the second half as pressure on the Chabot back four by Jason Diaz, Johnathan Garcia and Cesar Ramirez forced an errant pass which Ramirez pounced on and slotted home to reduce the lead to a single goal. College of Marin kept the pressure but were unable to find the equalizer. Chabot added a pair of insurance goals late, however the 5-2 final score line did lot belie the competitiveness of the match.
It was a solid effort for Head Coach Jake Morrison in his debut as the Men's Soccer Coach. "First game, after first week of training, I am proud of the resiliency of the group with their play and the effort on the pitch. Even off the pitch we displayed great camaraderie and although this result was not in our favor we showed a little bit of something to build off."
Instead of singling out a single player for accolades Morrison said "Entire group. They dealt with the adversity and displayed a brave front to continue to work through things that most teams would crumble from. We took one on the chin today but will be back tomorrow."
The Mariners return to the pitch in short order as they play two more home games in the opening week, Friday, September 2nd against Monterey at 4pm and Saturday, September 3rd versus Cañada College at 5pm.