PLYMOUTH, N.H. - Senior Semir Mehmedovic (Concord, N.H./Franklin H.S.) scored three goals Monday afternoon at Panther Field to lead fourth-seeded Plymouth State University to a 6-0 victory over fifth-seeded Western Connecticut State University in a quarterfinal match of the 2008 Little East Conference Men's Soccer Tournament.
The Panthers, 7-8-3 overall, move on to a semifinal match-up on Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. at top-seeded and regular season champion University of Southern Maine (12-7-1). PSU and WestConn had tied 1-1 in the regular season match on Oct. 11. The Colonials complete their campaign at 8-10-2.
Plymouth State got on the board just seven minutes into the match when freshman Dre Cabral (Tokyo, Japan) headed home a nice crossing pass from senior Gareth Stephens (Yeovil, England). Mehmedovic made it 2-0 just three minutes later when he knocked home a free kick, and it was 3-0 by the 20-minute mark after Mehmedovic converted a penalty kick.
It was 3-0 at the intermission, and Mehmedovic scored the natural hat trick early in the second half when he was sent in alone with a lead pass from junior Tim Allan (Harleysville, Pa.). It was his second hat trick of the season and fourth of his career. Mehmedovic, who leads the team with 11 goals and nine assists this season, continues to climb up PSU's all-time scoring list, and now ranks tied for sixth with 27 goals, tied for fifth with 21 assists, and sixth with 75 points.
Sophomore Greg Blanchette (Bow, N.H.) and freshman Dimitrios Kapotis (Woodsville, N.H.) rounded out the scoring for PSU in the final 15 minutes, with sophomore Tommy Schrey (Munich, Germany/Alvirne-N.H.) assisting on both markers.
PSU finished with an 11-5 advantage in shots. PSU senior keepers Tyler Shute (Deerfield, N.H.) and Nick Giusto (West Islip, N.Y.), who played the last 15 minutes, each made one save, while senior Dan Michalowski (Bristol, Conn.) made three saves in his final game before coming out with five minutes remaining.
Wednesday's semifinal will give the Panthers a chance to avenge a 2-0 loss to Southern Maine back on Oct. 4 at Panther Field.
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