BOSTON, Mass. - Senior Semir Mehmedovic (Zvornik, Bosnia) recorded his second hat trick of the season Saturday afternoon to lead the Plymouth State University men's soccer team past the University of Massachusetts Boston, 5-1, at the Clark Athletic Center Field.
Mehmedovic, who now has six career hat tricks, put PSU in the lead eight minutes into the game and added two more goal midway through the second half to seal the win. He now has an LEC-leading 14 goals and 31 points this season, and ranks third on PSU's career scoring list with 43 goals, 25 assists and 111 points.
More importantly, he helped the Panthers (9-6 overall) back into the race for an LEC play-off berth. After dropping its first two conference games of the season, PSU has won three of its last four to even its LEC mark at 3-3. UMB falls to 4-9-1 overall and 1-4-0 in the LEC.
Mehmedovic got things started early, tallying the game's first goal just 8:18 into the match. The forward bent a free kick around a four-man wall to find the back of the net and give PSU the quick 1-0 advantage.
The Panthers increased their advantage to 2-0 at the 14:34 mark when freshman Aly El Tambouly (Cairo, Egypt) took a cross from sophomore Alex Martins (Pawcatuck, Conn.) into the UMB box and fired a shot toward the goal. The shot deflected off of a Beacon defender, eluding senior goalkeeper Domenick Persuitte (West Barnstable, Mass.) for El Tambouly's second goal of the year.
UMass Boston cut the lead in half when freshman Victor Costa (Malden, Mass.) converted a penalty kick for his second goal on the season at 31:05. The Beacons looked poised to even the score until junior Eric Owens (Newton, N.H.) provided a huge lift off the Panther bench, scoring his second goal of the campaign with just 2:12 remaining in the half. Owens was assisted by sophomore Dre Cabral (Tokyo, Japan) who directed a head ball pass right to his teammate's foot .
Mehmedovic wrapped up the day's scoring, notching his second and third goals of the match in a span of 5:23. His second tally came at the 63:24 mark when junior Stefan Welch (Tokyo, Japan) sent a through ball from the midfield right to Mehmedovic who scored with a low, hard strike to the right corner. The game's final goal was scored when Owens headed a Beacon goal kick to Mehmedovic in stride as he completed the hat-trick.
Freshman keeper Bjorn Ohlsson (Halmstad, Sweden) made five saves in the match for the Panthers, while Persuitte turned away eight shots for the Beacons, matching his season-high.
Plymouth State is right back on the field Sunday at Babson College for a 1:00 p.m. non-conference contest, while the Beacons host Eastern Connecticut in an LEC make-up game on Monday.
(Courtesy of UMass Boston Sports Information)
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