BAKERSFIELD, Calif. – The UMKC men’s soccer team came up with a huge second half goal to down CSU Bakersfield Sunday night with a score of 1-0.
Coming down to the end of conference play, UMKC competed in a gritty battle for 90 minutes against a hungry CSU Bakersfield team. Both squads were squished in the conference standings and it showed Sunday night in Bakersfield, Calif.
Diving into the first period of play, there were a total of 14 shots, 11 fouls and five saves from both of the WAC conference foes. Specifically on the part of the Runners, who were very aggressive from the tip as the Roos were on their heels all throughout the first 45 minutes but maintained a 0-0 tie heading into the second period of play.
When the whistle started for the second period, the UMKC offensive attack was able to squeeze through the Runners and their defender unit to score a critical goal in the 52nd minute of play.
It was a pretty drive for UMKC as junior forward Tim Staerz (Bad Nauheim, Germany) found senior forward Pantelis Popgeorgiev (Budapest, Hungary) who would weave through the Runners, striking the lone goal of the night for the Roos. The goal would be Popgeorgiev’s second of the season.
Staerz would deliver his third assist on the 2018 campaign and fifth point overall for an offensive unit that has struggled to put the ball in the back of the net during conference play.
Looking down the opposite end of the field, junior goalkeeper Filippo Errico (Verona, Italy) has delivered quality performance after quality performance between the posts in 2018 for the Roos. Diving into the stat book, Errico accumulated three saves while facing nine shots from the Runners. Head coach Rick Benben made a switch at goalie in the second period however, going with senior Ryan Tome (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) who maintained the same level of play his counterpart displayed in the first period.
Tome would close out the latter part of the game with two saves of his own while facing even more shots from CSU Bakersfield, totaling 12 in the period.
“I decided that I wanted to split time between Filippo and Ryan,” commented Benben. “Both of the guys held their own in today’s match.”
The win moves UMKC to a 4-12 (3-7) record for the 2018 season. The Roos still sit outside the top six teams who get invited to the WAC Conference Tournament. Overall, it was a solid outing from a UMKC team looking to close out the season on a high note.
“Solid performance from the back front and a great all-around effort today,” stated Benben. “The team showed a lot of character and discipline throughout the match.”
Completing their road trip in California, the Roos will return to play in Durwood Stadium to take on Houston Baptist in the last game of the regular season on Saturday, Nov. 2nd at 7 p.m. CT.
– UMKC –