BENNINGTON, Vt. – A five-goal second half led the way for Southern Vermont College to walk out with a big, 7-0 win over Vermont Technical College Wednesday evening in non-conference men's soccer action at Everett Field.
The victory makes way for the Mountaineers' first three-game winning streak since October of 2015.
Southern Vermont (3-7) now looks ahead to a New England Collegiate Conference game on Saturday at Mitchell College with kickoff slated for 1 p.m. The Knights (3-6) return to Yankee Small College Conference action on Saturday with a 4 p.m. start at the University of Maine at Machias.
SVC junior captain Nikolas Joseph (Coventry, Conn.) had a great day as he assisted the eventual game winner before adding another assist and a goal of his own in the second half. Freshman Jared Lacoste (Arlington, Vt.) also had a pair of helpers and a score in the win for him to now sit at second in the NECC with 14 points on the year.
Mountaineer freshman keeper Dylan Berg (Tampa, Fla) registered his first collegiate shutout while making five saves in the win (3-7). His freshman counterpart Jonathan Alvin finished with seven saves in the loss.
It was just 1:05 into the game when Southern Vermont would get—what proved to be—all that was needed for the victory. Joseph made a long run with the ball up the right edge of the pitch before cutting back across the top of the box; his attempt at net would be saved, but a rebound opportunity fell in front of freshman Ray Awusi (Gaithersburg, Md.) who got dirty and slid it home before the VTC keeper could corral it. Awusi's second score of the year ended up being his second game winner in the last week and also of the campaign.
The Mountaineers extended their lead less than five minutes later with Lacoste's first assist of the day. He carried the ball deep down the left side of the field before playing it backwards and towards the middle to sophomore Connor Kristiansen (Shelton, Conn.); Kristiansen took two touches to settle and set up his shot from 25 yards, and he fired a great take that dropped into the upper-right side of the frame for his first of the season.
That would be all of the goals in the first half, however, as the teams played a scoreless 39:15 to finish out the opening stanza. The SVC defense helped the hosts maintain momentum as it allowed just five total shots (two on net) in the period.
It took the Mountaineers over 12 minutes after play resumed to find the back of the cage once again, but once they did, the team scored four goals in a span of 6:25 of clock time. The first of those came when sophomore captain Lee Dennis (Chocorua, N.H.) played a great pass down the gut and through the Knight defense; freshman Jimmy Thach (Phoenix, Ariz.) read the play perfectly and was already in mid-stride to meet the ball once it got into the clearing. Thach used his first touch to hit a shot from the top of the box into the lower-left corner of the frame for his second of the year to come in the 58th minute.
Just over four minutes later, Joseph got his first of the season to go for the 4-0 upper hand. Lacoste took a pass from Thach at the top-left edge of the box, went at a defender, and played a square pass along the 18; Joseph ran on and met it with the keeper coming at him, and he fired a shot into the upper-right part of the net.
1:07 later in the 63rd minute, freshman Nick Langat (Silver Spring, Md.) got on the scoresheet with his second of the year. Classmate Esteban De La Cruz (Granada Hills, Calif.) hit a free kick from 57 yards away—a soaring ball that went all the way to the left side of the six-yard box; Langat leapt up and put his head on it to pop the ball across the frame and over the keeper for the 5-0 advantage.
The scoreboard could barely keep up as SVC changed it once again just 1:03 later. Langat played the ball into the middle of the box from the left side of the field, and Joseph met it there to switch directions and get Alvin to leave the net open. Joseph sent the ball back towards the goal, and Lacoste came sprinting on to leave it undoubted for his sixth of the year.
The Mountaineer offense wasn't done yet as it capped the scoring with one final tally in the 84th minute. A cross was sent in from the left side of the field to the back of the penalty area where sophomore Carlos Rivera (Washington, D.C.) was waiting. It ricocheted off him and a VTC defender, but Rivera got to it again and poked it home for his first collegiate goal.
– #LetsGoSVC –