Clark U. gets past PSU Men’s Soccer

Karlstrand nets lone goal for Panthers in setback

            PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Freshman Kyle Russo (Westford, Mass.) and senior Gianluca Ranallo (Scarsdale, N.Y.) scored goals less than two minutes apart in the first half Wednesday evening and Clark University went on to a 3-1 victory over Plymouth State University in non-conference men's soccer action at Panther Field.

            PSU cut the deficit to 2-1 on a goal by freshman Ted Karlstrand (Halmstad, Sweden) 11 minutes into the second half, but junior Kenneth Vera (Franklin Square, N.Y.) put the game away for the Cougars with just under three minutes to play.  Clark improves to 8-9 overall, while PSU drops to 6-10.

            Russo put the Cougars on the board in the 14th minute with his first career goal.  A Clark crossing pass was punched away by PSU keeper Bjorn Ohlsson (Halmstad, Sweden), but it ricocheted to Russo who deposited it in the back of the net for a 1-0 lead.  It took the Cougars just a minute and 48 seconds to tack on their second goal, as Ranallo came down the left side, cut to the middle and fired a shot from about 30 yards out that found the top right corner, making it 2-0.

            Clark had a chance to extend the margin when it was awarded a penalty kick, but Ohlsson made a diving stop to his right to keep it a two-goal game. The Cougars out-shot the Panthers in the opening frame, 8-3.

            PSU broke into the scoring column in the 56th minute when senior Parker Spear (Sodus Point, N.Y.) sent a nice cross from the left side into the box, and Karlstrand received the ball on one bounce and hammered it past the keeper for his third goal of the season.

            The Panthers pressured the Clark offense zone in the final 15 minutes, but got caught pushing forward in the 88th minute when freshman Nicholas Mallozzi (Stamford, Conn.) sent a feed pass ahead to Vera, who ran down the right side before beating reserve keeper Sam Whipple (Kingston, N.H.) to the near side to round out the scoring.

            Clark finished with a 13-7 advantage in shots for the game.  Senior Ryan King (Brimfield, Mass.) recorded the victory for the Cougars, making three saves.  Ohlsson finished with three first-half saves for PSU and Whipple made two stops in the second half.

            PSU wraps up the regular season Saturday with a pivotal Little East Conference home game against the University of Massachusetts Boston.  The Panthers can clinch an LEC post-season berth with a win or a tie against the Beacons.  Clark concludes its regular season Saturday with a NEWMAC contest against MIT.

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