HILLSBORO— The McPherson College men's soccer team went into hostile territory on Tuesday night and came home a little banged up, but with a 2-0 win. The Bulldogs were on the road Tuesday, opening up KCAC play at Tabor College.
The Bluejays have had a rough start to the season, going 1-3-2 in non-conference games, but were still a dangerous side. The Bulldogs knew they would be in for a fight and Tabor did not disappoint. The Mac men stuck with the game plan, playing out of the back and dictating the pace of play through possession.
Their patience and persistence paid off in the 36-minute of the first half. Evariste Abeli beat his defender on the right side. Just inside the 18-yard box, he took a shot that caromed off the near post and landed at the feet of Marcus Fernandes, who settled the ball, then fired it into the back of the net. The Bulldogs held the Bluejays scoreless the final nine minutes of the half and went into the break leading 1-0.
The second have was more of the same. The Bulldogs held the advantage in time of possession, and they didn't waver from the game plan prepared by the coaching staff. With under 15 minutes to play in regulation, the Bulldogs put up an insurance goal. This time from Marcus Brasley, who had come off the bench a few minutes prior. The Bulldog goalkeeper, Valentin Bravo punted ball with the wind at his back. The Ball bounced well past the half field mark and took a couple of big bounces toward the Bluejay goal. Brasley ran under the ball, timed one of the bounces, and as the Bluejay keeper came off his line, he headed it over the outstretched arm of the keeper.
Bravo was credited with the assist, and he picked up the clean sheet in the win. The Bulldogs outshot the Bluejays 15-1, and 8-0 in shots on goal.
"Tonight was a good start to conference play," Coach Doug Quint said. "We were pretty dominate tonight all around. Defensively we didn't give up any shots on goal and offensively we were good in possession. Moving forward we just need to be more clinical in front of goal. I was pleased to see us keep our heads against their very physical play. Now we just need to continue getting guys healthy and move onto the next match."
With the win, the Bulldogs even up their overall record at 3-3, and they move to 1-0 in KCAC play. They will be back on the pitch on Saturday when they go back on the road to face Southwestern College in Winfield. The game Saturday is on the schedule for a 7 p.m. start time.