Panthers drop non-conference match-up to Jumbos
MEDFORD, Mass. – Tufts University sprinted out to an early lead and never looked back on a bone chilling Wednesday afternoon, defeating Plymouth State University, 4-0, in non-conference men's soccer action.
Gus Santos, Maxime Hoppenot, and Gaston Becherano tallied goals for the 9-1-3 Jumbos, while Rui Pinheiro notched two assists. It was Tufts' third straight shutout. PSU dropped to 5-8-1 overall.
Despite unfavorable weather conditions, the Jumbos took an early 1-0 lead. Just a minute and a half in, Connor Brown passed the ball into the middle from the right wing and found Santos who took a rip on net that appeared to be heading over the crossbar, but a blistering wind halted the ball in flight and caught everyone off guard, including Plymouth State goalkeeper Felix Lindeberg (Stockholm, Sweden). The ball dropped out of the air and behind the keeper into the net.
The Jumbos struck again before 10 minutes had gone by. This time it was a Pinheiro dish that was sent to Hoppenot, who cleverly hit the ball with the outside of his right foot as it deflected off Lindeberg for the score.
Panther forwards Nick Rutherford (Batesman Bay, New South Wales) and Alex Herbert (Lexington, Mass.) were intended targets of several through balls, but nothing ever came to fruition, as Tufts goaltender Bruce Johnson, who started his second game for the Jumbos, was quick to defuse any potential chances.
Two minutes after the Hoppenot goal, Brown raced down the right flank and lofted a ball intended for Hoppenot, but it flew just past him and reached Santos who headed it hard on net. In an attempt to clear the ball, a Panther defender hit it into his own net for the own goal.
In the second half, the Jumbos continued to press and eventually furthered their lead. First, Santos sent a beautiful ball across the field to Brown who settled it, took one touch, and rocketed it off the crossbar. With less than 10 minutes to go, Becherano collected the ball on the left side and dribbled inward to his right. He launched a gorgeous curving ball that curled into the right side netting for his second goal of the season.
Lindeberg finished with three saves for PSU. Johnson played well for Tufts and made two saves on his way to recording his first shutout of the year.
PSU returns home for Little East Conference action Sunday at the New Hampton School against the University of Massachusetts Boston (1:00 p.m.)
(Courtesy of Tufts Sports Information)
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