By Tyler Bindi | Sports Editor

Men’s soccer finished the season strongly with an impressive victory over Portland on Saturday afternoon.(Courtesy of SMC Gaels)

The Saint Mary’s men’s soccer team finished their season with a 3-2 win over Portland on Saturday to send their seniors off with one final victory on senior day. Saturday’s win improved the Gaels record to 6-6-5 overall and 3-2-2 in West Coast Conferences matches.

Eight seniors were honored before kickoff, and they did not hesitate to make their presence felt on the field. Saint Mary’s jumped out to an early lead as Dakota Armour and Frederick Karman put on a passing display that set up Ever De La Torre for a goal just three minutes into the match. It only took another 10 minutes for Armour to add his second assist to the stat sheet as he found fellow senior Sem Kroon on a cross that lead to a header that gave Saint Mary’s a 2-0 advantage.

Anders Engerbretsen undoubtedly had the shot of the day when he netted a brilliant 25-yard strike that bounced straight down off the cross bar to give the Gaels a 3-0 lead.

The Pilots then found a new sense of urgency and quickly began climbing back into the game. Portland’s Matthew Coffey and Rey Ortiz scored two goals in a three-minute span to cut the deficit to just one goal. Erik Edwardson came just inches away from an equalizing goal as he sent in a curving free kick that bent just wide left.

The win allowed the Gaels to remain undefeated at home on the year for the first time in program history. The team finished with a 3-0-4 record when playing at Saint Mary’s Stadium.

The men’s soccer team looks to continue heading in the right direction. The Gaels finished the season with a winning record in West Coast Conference play for the seventh straight season. Even though they will have lost eight seniors, the Gaels still have a talented crop of young players that will play a vital role in the program’s success next season.

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