WESTON, Mass. – A second half goal proved to be the deciding factor as #4 Regis College fell to #5 Lesley University, 1-0 in a New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) First Round men's soccer matchup on Wednesday evening at Regis Stadium. Junior Jordan Santos (Middlebury, Conn.) provided the heroics for the Lynx, scoring the eventual game-winner in the 63rd minute.
Both teams played to a scoreless opening half, with the Pride holding the slight 6-5 edge in shots. Lesley's most dangerous scoring chance of the period came a little over halfway in off of a corner kick by sophomore Marcel Howard (Newport News, Va.). Howard found Ryan Richardson (Santa Barbara, Calif.), but goalkeeper Stefan Todorovic (Los Angeles, Calif.) was able to handle his header attempt.
The Pride had a good look of their own five minutes later after a nice combination play amongst a trio of sophomores. Kenny Charron (W. Warrwick, R.I.) dribbled up the field and dished the ball to Christian Mukala (Malden, Mass.), who one-timed a through ball to Renato Rosas (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.). Rosas took a shot from the left side inside the box, but Nathan Trucks (Guilford, Conn.) was there to make the stop.
Lesley would go on to score the lone goal of the game 18 minutes into the second half. Howard played a long cross from the right corner, which freshman Erik Johansen (W. Harrison, N.Y.) flicked over to Santos with his head. Santos trapped the ball down to his foot and ripped a shot that found the top right corner of the net.
With 20 minutes remaining in regulation, the Pride started to press for the equalizer. With about 15 minutes left, senior defender Alex Caliendo (Windsor, Conn.) found classmate Nick Tavares (Bellingham, Mass.) in the box off a long throw in. Unfortunately for the Crimson & Gold, Tavares' bicycle kick attempt sailed just wide of the net.
Regis had another dangerous look two minutes later thanks to a great play by Mukala. Mukala weaved around a few Lesley defenders before walking in and firing a shot that looked like it might be headed for the back of the net. Trucks came off his line and made a sprawling save, however, to keep the Pride off the scoreboard.
Todorovic and freshman Manny Calderon (Bristol, Conn.) split time in goal and finished with six saves and two saves, respectively. Truck stopped all three shots on frame to help the Lynx get the clean sheet.
With the loss, the Pride's season comes to a close with a 7-9-2 overall mark. Lesley (9-7-2) advances to the NECC Semifinals on Friday at #1 Elms College.