Bears score three unanswered goals as Eagles drop SAC lid-lifter 3-2

Bears score three unanswered goals as Eagles drop SAC lid-lifter 3-2

Richard Moodie Interview

Game Highlights

JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – The Carson-Newman men's soccer team (2-1-1) dropped its South Atlantic Conference opener 3-2 to the Lenoir-Rhyne Bears Wednesday night at McCown Field in a contest where the Eagles scored the first two goals of the contest before seeing L-R scored the final three goals unanswered.

"It's tough. We just didn't limit their threats all night. We knew what they were going to do. The boys knew what they were going to do, but they couldn't counter it. The goal we conceded, number one, is just poor, but then no reaction. The second goal, no reaction; down 3-2, and then we are trying to get back into the game and it's just too late at that point," coach Richard Moodie said. "Credit Lenoir-Rhyne, they came here, they did what they meant to do and they deserved it."

Carson-Newman opened the scoring in the fourth-minute as senior Poly Avgousti (Paphos, Cyprus) lined up a corner kick from the left flag. Avgousti's corner sailed to the back post and found the noggin of senior James Ward (Trine Cornwell, England) to beat L-R goalkeeper Benjamin Lundt. Ward's goal was his first of the season and the third of his career.

The Eagles added their second score in the 20th-minute. Reigning SAC Player of the Week Nick Skoda (Knoxville, Tenn.) made a run into the left side of the box and took a shot that was saved by Lundt, but the keeper did not field the ball cleanly and gave up the rebound in the six-yard box. Freshman Thibault Mathorez (Graces, France) walked unmarked into the box and scored his second goal of the season to push C-N's lead to 2-0.

Lenoir-Rhyne scored a goal at the half-hour mark to cut the Eagles' lead to 2-1. Senior Ben Meredith made a run down the right side of the field and chipped his shot over the head of senior Kavi Luchowa (London, England) and that was the last score of the half.

The game remained a 2-1 Carson-Newman lead until the 69th-minute when Lenoir-Rhyne equalized. The Bears' Ismael Noumansana scored his first of two goals off a corner. Leon Mueller-Wiesen sent a cross from the left flag towards the back post that was headed back into the box by Mitch Botfield; Noumansana retrieved the cross, turned and fired a shot towards the left post to make the score 2-2.

L-R added the game-winner in the 81st-minute when Noumansana and Mueller-Weisen combined for the third tally. Mueller-Wiesen crossed the ball into the box and the cross was misplayed by Luchowa, which allowed Noumansana to get possession of the ball all alone in the six-yard box and fire home a shot for the 3-2 win.

Lenoir-Rhyne outshot Carson-Newman 19 to nine during the game including 15 shots tallied in the first half for the Bears; L-R knocked off the Eagles for the first time in five matches.

Mathorez led the Eagles with three shots; the Frenchman was the only player in Orange and Blue to record more than one shot. Noumansana led the Bears with five shots, while Botfield followed in his teammate's footsteps with four shots.

"For me, I want to leave the field always feeling like we've done all we could do to prevent a score like that from happening and I don't think we did," Moodie said. "We have to hold our hands up as a coaching staff as well because we are a part of this team."

Carson-Newman welcomes Newberry to McCown Field on Saturday night for a SAC contest at 7:30 p.m. as the Eagles look for their first win in the league.