Bobcats blank Nighthawks, 3-0, for third straight win

Bobcats blank Nighthawks, 3-0, for third straight win

DAHLONEGA, Ga. --- Matthew Cureton (Waxhaw, N.C.)  netted his first collegiate goal in the 11th minute to propel the Lees-McRae College men's soccer team to its third straight win with a 3-0 victory over the University of North Georgia on Wednesday afternoon in non-conference action.

Lees-McRae (3-3) controlled the run of play for much of the match, outshooting North Georgia (1-7) by a 15-9 margin, including a 7-3 advantage in the first half. The Bobcats also held a 5-4 edge in corner attempts, as the teams combined for just 14 fouls and one caution.

Cureton paced the Bobcats with his first career match-winner, as Jordan Wright (West Lothian, Scotland) added an assist to go along with his third goal in the last two matches. Yago Xavier (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) tacked on his second strike of the season.  Thomas Rusling (Sheffield, England) made one save to keep his second clean sheet of the campaign, and 16th of his career. Cureton and Wright each put three shots on frame.

Carlos Reyes led the way for North Georgia with two shots, one on frame, as Kris Alonzo made seven saves between the pipes.

The Bobcats got off to a flying start in the 11th minute, when Wright found Cureton with a perfectly placed cross for the finish and a 1-0 lead. Wright doubled the advantage less than a minute later, netting his third of the season with a free kick from 25 yards out. Xavier would cap the scoring early in the 32nd minute with a textbook penalty.

Wright nearly netted the double on two separate occasions in the 74th and 85th minutes, forcing a pair of saves from Alonzo as the Bobcats outshot the Nighthawks by an 8-6 margin in the final 45 minutes.

Lees-McRae returns to the pitch on Saturday when the Bobcats resume their Conference Carolinas slate against North Greenville University at 5 p.m. on Tate Field.

- LMC -