PINEVILLE, La. (LSUA Sports Information) - The LSUA men’s soccer team put two in the back of the net in the first half, giving the Generals all they would need to secure a home match in the first round of the 2019 RRAC Soccer Tournament presented by Farmers Bank & Trust with a 2-1 win over the Southwest Mustangs Saturday afternoon at Louisiana College’s Wildcat Field.
How It Happened:
Just as the match was about to hit the half hour mark, the Generals struck. LSUA earned a corner kick, which was lifted into the box, but a Southwest player got to it and popped the ball straight up in the air. It came down perfectly for Brian Okpala, who headed it into the net for his third goal on the week and a 1-0 LSUA lead. The Generals raised the score right before halftime, as a Mustang player was called for a foul with just about a minute left before the break. With the ball spotted just inside the LSUA offensive half, Rafael Bastos lifted the free kick towards the box, and Ethan Joseph got his head to it, putting it out of the reach of the onrushing goalkeeper and into the back of the net for the 2-0 lead at the break. USW pulled one back in the 81st minute with a goal that took an unlucky deflection off of a Generals defender, but LSUA wouldn’t let that ruin their senior day as the team closed out the win.
“It’s nice to get back in the win column,” said LSUA head coach Michael Poropat. “The players did enough to secure a home playoff match. Now we turn and prepare for Huston-Tillotson next weekend.”
Other Key Statistics:
Sr. D Brian Okpala’s goal was is fourth of the season, and ninth of his LSUA career. He took a team high three shots in the match, putting two on frame.
Jr. D Ethan Joseph’s goal was the first of his LSUA career. He took two shots in the match, putting both on target.
So. GK Alvaro Garcia was credited with one save in the match. He’s five saves away from tying the LSUA single season saves record.
LSUA took ten shots in the match and put five on target. Southwest took 11 shots with just two going on frame.
The Generals (10-5-3, 4-3-2 RRAC) will enter the 2019 Red River Athletic Conference Tournament presented by Farmers Bank & Trust as the four-seed, and will host a first round match next week against Huston-Tillotson. The Generals and Rams (5-7-2, 3-4-2 RRAC) battled to a 2-2 draw this past Thursday. Date and time of the first round match is still to be announced, but it will take place at Generals Field.
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