Thomas College’s Isak Granstrom (6) battles for the ball against the University of Maine at Farmington’s Cade McHugh (4) on Tuesday in Waterville. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

WATERVILLE — It will take at least another match to decide who has an edge between the Thomas and University of Maine at Farmington men’s soccer teams for the 2023 season.

The Terriers (1-2-4) and Beavers (3-3-1) played to a 1-1 tie in a North Atlantic Conference showdown in front of a capacity crowd Tuesday night at Smith Field.

The match continued a strong back-and-forth rivalry.

“The last four games prior to tonight has been a win or a loss, vice versa, alternating,” Thomas head coach Kyle Fletcher said. “Last year, they knocked us out in the regular season, we knocked them out in the playoffs. Last year, vice versa. So tonight, I think a draw is kind of fitting.”

Both goals were scored in the first half. UMF opened the scoring, when freshman forward Mohamed Adow knocked a shot into the net with 41 minutes remaining in the first half.

“Our guys battled the whole entire game,” UMF head coach Blake Hart said. “I’m proud of the guys. I think we could have put more pressure on in the first half after we scored. But I’m proud of them for fighting for sure.”


Thomas responded 32 minutes later, when junior forward Joshua Joseph took a pass, found some room and found the back of the net to tie the game at 1-1.

“I’m proud of how they fought back and how they gathered themselves,” Fletcher said. “I feel like we wouldn’t have dug our heels in and got back into the game last year. It’s a step in the right direction for sure, but we need to find guys to put the ball in the back of the net and find ways to win.”

UMF outshot Thomas in the second half, but goalkeeper Jayce Nielsen made two diving saves to keep the game tied. Play between both teams was chippy and physical throughout, with several players getting tripped up. It almost spilled over into a bench-clearing incident early in the second half, but coaches and officials were quick to get both teams back to their respective benches.

“I love (the rivalry),” Hart said. “It was a very chippy and good game. I think (in previous years) we kind of lost that and we’re kind of bringing that back. The last three or four years have been really close (scores).”

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