Rutherford scores twice in Panther victory
SALEM, Mass. – Sophomore Nick Rutherford (Sydney, Australia) scored two goals Friday evening as the Plymouth State University men's soccer team posted a 3-2 victory over Salem State University in PSU's season opener at Alumni Field.
Rutherford scored the first and last goals of the game, putting the Panthers on the board in the ninth minute and snapping a 2-2 deadlock in the final minute of the first half for the eventual match-winner.
The Vikings had a few scoring opportunities early on, but could not capitalize, including a cross field pass from Ralph Bertrand (Rowley, Mass.) that was headed by Tim Kilpatrick (Anaheim, Calif.) in front of the Panthers box just outside the right post. Immediately after, the Panthers pushed the ball up the field where Rutherford put his team on top 1-0 with a deep shot that beat Salem State goaltender Greg Enos (Peabody, Mass.) high. Bertrand had another opportunity to put the ball in the net for the Vikings, but was denied by the post.
Salem State's luck changed in the 22nd minute when they were granted a free kick from just outside the Panthers' box where Mitch Tepe (Sterling, Mass.) headed in a goal directly off the free kick from Kilpatrick. Moments later, Salem State tacked on another goal the came off a rebound initially shot by Bertrand, but was put home by Conner Erickson (Hubbardston, Mass.).
Just before the end of the first half, the Vikings were called for a penalty in their own zone that gave the Panthers a free kick just outside the arc. With that opportunity Rutherford finessed the ball over Enos' head to give Plymouth State a 3-2 advantage heading into the half. That goal proved to be the game-winner as both sides went scoreless in the second half.
Despite being outscored, the Vikings' offense got off 15 shots compared to the nine by Plymouth State. Enos stopped three shots for the Vikings while junior Felix Lindeberg (Stockholm, Sweden) saved six shots in the victory.
The Panthers play their next two games at home, beginning with the home opener Sunday at 4:00 p.m. against New England College.
(Courtesy of Salem State Sports Information)
-- 30 --