Men's Soccer Captures Pirates For First Victory of the Season, 3-2
Sept. 29, 2001
COLLIERVILLE, Tenn. - Senior Sean Fraser had a goal and two assists, as the U of M Tiger soccer team snapped a three-game losing streak and picked up their first win of the season with a 3-2 defeat over C-USA newcomer East Carolina at the Mike Rose Soccer Complex, Saturday evening.
Memphis (1-4-2, 1-1-1 C-USA) appeared fresh and attacked from the first whistle after relying on constant offensive pressure from Fraser, Lars Thorstensen and John Reilly who each had a goal and posted five shots a-piece in the win. The Pirates had entered the match on a one-game winning streak but fell to 4-3 on the season and 1-2 in league play after the loss.
"We displayed tremendous character tonight and seemed to be the better team," said head coach Richie Grant. "It was great to see us pick things up after we let them back into it at 2-2, and continue for the victory. Still, we're under no illusions...we realize that we have to come out and take care of business tomorrow against a good Vanderbilt side."
With the win, the Tigers improve to 1-1-1 in conference action after posting a season-high 21 shots which resulted in 12 saves from Pirate keeper R.J. Marvinney. The U of M outshot ECU 21-10 and held the edge on corner kicks 4-2.
The Pirates struck first in the second minute of play when Josh Foltz collected a pass from Joe Ellington for the 1-0 advantage. ECU would hold the lead for the ensuing 30 minutes before the U of M equilized in the 34th minute when Fraser knocked home his second goal of the season after taking a pass from defender Stephen Lewis which sent Memphis into the intermission tied at one.
The Tigers took their first lead of the match roughly twenty mintues into the second half when Fraser beat two ECU defenders and sent a looping ball to Thorstensen who briefly settled the bouncing pass, before slamming home his second goal of the year.
Things would get interesting during a two-minute span late into the second half when both teams scored with consecutive strikes. The Pirates struck first and evenutally tied the match at two, off a brilliant re-start that began after Marvinney turned away a shot from Tiger forward Reid Greenslade. The ECU keeper then fed a sprinting Brian Deutsch down the right sideline who crossed a ball to Sean Dugan for ECU's second goal of the night. Fortunately for Memphis, the tie quickly evaporated less than 1:30 later when Fraser collected his second assist on the night after his shot, which was saved by Marvinney, produced a rebound in the mouth in the goal which Reilly banged home for the game-winner .
"Stephen Lewis played like a true team captain and Sean Fraser appears to be getting back on track, " stated Grant. "It's great to be able to pick up three points with the win and improve our position within the conference. With Sean and Lars getting back on the same page, we looked like the Memphis of old tonight ."
Memphis returns to action tomorrow when they host Missouri Valley Conference soccer member Vanderbilt at 6 p.m. The match will conclude a double-header taking place on Sunday at the MRSC with the Lady Tiger-Cincinnati match-up kicking things off at 2 p.m.