JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Coming off of a 1-0 shutout upset over fifth-ranked Lenoir-Rhyne on Wednesday night, Carson-Newman looks to keep the momentum alive hosting Queens on Saturday.
The Eagles handed the Bears their first loss of the season on Wednesday night at McCown Field to extend their undefeated run to four games since Sept. 6. The Eagles were outshot for the first time this year, 12-7, but was able to get four shots on goal to two from the Bears.
"We've been asking the guys all season to work hard and leave it all on the field," head coach Stephen Lyons mentioned of his team. "They stood together, played together for long periods to soak up a lot of pressure and once again worked hard to get a great result."
Through the defensive effort and two saves from goalkeeper Twan Verweij, Lyons' group picked up its fourth clean sheet of the season and has a 3-0-1 record when allowing no goals.
Tobias Solem Karlsen netted the in the 32nd gaining after gaining possession on a pass from Samuel Jenkins to break through a duo of L-R receivers to send a shot skidding past Zach King to give the Eagles the only goal they would need to seal the victory.
L-R's team and conference leading scorer from a season before, Ismael Noumansana, was held to just four shots in the game with none on goal.
Now the Eagles will work to put Wednesday's victory behind them as they set their eyes on a Saturday match-up with the visiting Queens Royals.
The high-tempo games have pushed the Eagles to show their depth and confidence throughout the season and coach Lyons expects the team to remain level-minded heading into the next match.
"Obviously, the emotion swings can be big and certain calls or plays don't go your way so frustrations can sink in, but I thought we managed that on Wednesday," Lyons assessed. "We've been managing that pretty well throughout the season so we just need to continue to build that into the confidence in our ability to play."
Queens ended 2016 with a 6-8-1 record, 3-7-1 in South Atlantic Conference play. They finished ninth in the SAC standings at the end of the season and were slated to finish at the eighth spot in the conference's preseason poll for 2017.
Oliver Caria is in his seventh season at the helm of the program. He severed as an assistant coach for five years prior after four years of playing for the Royals before graduating in 2005. During his time as a student-athlete, the Royals garnered a 60-10-6 overall record, along with a 35-game conference winning streak and a 2002-03 season that saw the team going undefeated in regular season play. He was inducted to the Royals Hall of Fame in 2011 for his accomplishments as a student-athlete.
This season, the Royals return 17 players from last season, including three players who scored multiple goals in Alberto Morales (3), Edmundo Robinson (3) and Oemer Okyar (2).
Last year's meeting between the conference foes resulted in a 2-1 win for Queens at the Queens Sports Complex. Despite taking 13 shots with seven on goal to C-N's 20 with 9 on goal, the Royals scored goals in the 12th and 76th minutes to capture their fifth win of the season, breaking a winless streak against the Eagles that last five straight games, spanning over four seasons.
2017 has seen the Royals win one-goal games against Clayton State to open the season at home and Tusculum on Wednesday night. They stand at 3-1-1 in games played at the Queens Sports Complex in Charlotte and are 0-1-1 in road games. Their largest win thus far was a 4-1 home victory against Flagler College on Sept. 9.
C-N trails in the series 3-4-1 dating back to 1992, but leads in home matchups 2-1-1.
"It's important that we just get back to business, you know, last game's result is done and we've really got to focus on a Queens team who we expect to be a top-quality side since they've had some great results already this season," Lyons said. "We're looking to continue to build with another great result."
Saturday's game kicks off at 4:00. A live broadcast will be available on cneagles.com/live along with live stats and updates from @CNathletics.