Rollercoaster of Resilience: The 2022 Men’s Soccer Season


Samantha Dutch

The team celebrates a goal in the game against IUPUI on November 2, 2022

Evan Basista

With the men’s soccer 2022 season wrapping up earlier this month, it is worth taking a deeper look into the results of this season and what Colonials fans can expect going forward.

The team finished with a 6-7-3 record, including a 4-3-2 record in the Horizon League. Their season came to an end at the hands of the Oakland Golden Grizzlies, who defeated them in the Horizon League playoffs by a score of 2-2 (6-5 in penalty kicks). It was a highly contested game in which the Colonials showed the same resilience that got them to the playoffs, to begin with.

The team started the season with three straight losses, although they came against some tough competition in West Virginia, Duquesne, and Xavier.

Once conference play began, the team found its stride and their star players emerged. Chase Gilley led the way with four goals and Friedrich Petrelli was rock-solid in net, allowing only one goal across the team’s four-game unbeaten streak.

The rollercoaster continued its tumultuous ride, however, as the team dropped four straight games, scoring two goals in total. With a 3-7-1 record, it looked like that hot streak might be a flash in the pan.

Under the leadership of captain Kelvin Ramirez, the team rebounded again and went undefeated to end the season. Petrelli found his form from earlier in the season, again allowing only one goal across that span.

The team clinched a spot in the playoffs with a 5-0 win over IUPUI on Senior Day. It was one of two times the team scored five goals in a game, the other being a 5-0 win against Milwaukee in which Chase Gilley scored a hat trick.

Chase Gilley (7) led the team in goals and points for the Colonials in his first season in Moon Township (Photo by Samantha Dutch)

Taking a closer look at the statistics from the season, there is one main issue that is evident: the lack of depth scoring. The team scored 22 goals on the year, which averages out to 1.38 per game. Ten of those 22 goals came in just two games, the Milwaukee and IUPUI 5-0 wins. The team got shut out in six games, although they did shut out the opposition six times.

Chase Gilley led the way with seven goals and 16 points in 16 games. Other top scorers include Hugo Kadima with three goals and eight points, Victor Koah with two goals and six points, and Shane McMillan with two goals and five points.

The team has a bright future in goal with Friedrich Petrelli. He recorded a 1.19 goals-against-average and 44 saves on the season, and he is only a sophomore. It is a young Colonials team in general, with only four seniors or grad students. Pending any offseason transfers, most of this team will be back for next year.

Regardless of how the roster looks, they will need to figure out their identity under a new head coach.

Former head coach Jason O’Keefe stepped down on Nov 10, citing he wanted to spend more time with his family down in North Carolina after having coached for 22 years.

The RMU Athletic department is undergoing a national search, but there are some potential options in-house led by associate coach Matty Evans.

Evans previously served as an assistant coach at Georgia Southern, Appalachian State (under O’Keefe), Lander University, West Chester, and Seton Hill.

The future is bright for the Robert Morris men’s soccer team as they clinched their second straight playoff berth in as many seasons in the Horizon League.