Second-half surge pushes Panthers past Badgers
JOHNSON, VT. – The Plymouth State University men's soccer team used a balanced offensive attack Sunday afternoon to pick up a 4-0 decision against hosts Johnson State College.
The Panthers advance to 4-7-1 on the year while the loss sees the Badgers slide to 4-7-1 overall.
PSU got a first-half goal from freshman James Edmunds (Wilton, N.H.) and second-half scores from senior Ryan Curtin (Waterford, N.Y.) and juniors Mason Cliche (Lancaster, N.H.) and Refaat Bashir (Manchester, N.H./Central).
Freshman James Mansour (Auburn, N.H./Pinkerton) and junior Danny Marsh (Farmington, Conn.) split time in the Panther goal to share the whitewash. Mansour made four saves in the first half while Marsh did not face a shot on goal in the second half.
Both teams got off to a slow start, finding their feet as the time ticked on for the first 20 minutes. Right after the Badgers had a near goal that bounced off the crossbar, the Panthers turned things around and got on the board after junior Graham Hughes (Billerica, Mass.) set Edmunds up for an open shot on net. With the clock running down, both teams slowed their pace as the Panthers led at the half 1-0.
The Panthers tacked on their second score of the game seven minutes out of break when senior Aaron Smith (Loudon, N.H.) fed Curtin, who took the ball up the middle as he sprinted toward net and struck a low liner past Johnson keeper, Alex Pakatar. Cliche and Bashir added two more goals for PSU to seal the win, with their fourth goal coming with just 45 seconds left to play.
PSU dominated play in the game with heavy advantages in shots (20-8). Pakatar ended the day with five saves for the Badgers.
Johnson resumes conference play next Saturday for a 2:30p contest at New England College while Plymouth State hosts UMass Dartmouth Saturday at 4:00 p.m. in a key Little East Conference match-up.
(Courtesy of Johnson State Sports Information)
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