Hamilton plans to win while having fun

Matthew Chaves, Sports Editor

The Iona College men’s soccer team hopes to gain results in a more convincing manner this season while also having fun when playing their formation, according to head coach James Hamilton.

“If we continue to work on a brand of soccer that we all like to play (and watch) then good things will happen for us and we’ll enjoy it along the way,” Hamilton said.

The Gaels came close to sealing away many games last season. The final score line of eight matches out of the total 18 were within one goal. Three of those were overtime wins.

“There’s so much parity in college soccer and especially the MAAC,” Hamilton said. “That said, we had some of the best attacking stats in NCAA – so hopefully we can be more clinical in front of goal and put games to bed before overtime.”

Iona had a total of 248 shots last season, 127 of those being on goal. In comparison, their opponents, combined, had 208 shots, 89 of those being on goal. This resulted in 32 goals for the Gaels, 10 more than their opponents did.

Defense has played solid for the Gaels since last season, holding out many teams until the final moments. Their attacking side forces their hand well, but the Gaels struggle being clinical and finishing the attack, according to Hamilton.

“We could have scored more goals to compliment the possession and build-up play that we had,” Hamilton said. “We have faith in the attacking players we have and we know they’ll get it done this year.”

With this in mind, Hamilton aims to focus on solidifying their playstyle during the non-conference matches.

“Non-conference is more about getting the new players accustomed to our system and developing relationships all over the field,” Hamilton said.

Iona sophomore Mauro Bravo got four goals and three assists last season.