ATHENS, Tenn. – In its final non-conference game of the year on Saturday, the Southern Polytechnic State University men’s soccer team blanked the host Tennessee Wesleyan College Bulldogs by the score of 4-0. Southern Polytechnic is rated No. 8 nationally in this week’s NAIA coaches’ poll while Tennessee Wesleyan received 21 points to rank 34th.
“It was an ugly, scrappy game, honestly,” Southern Poly head coach Kom Momeni said. “I think the key to today’s game was the fact that we finished really well and our back line held tight. Tennessee Wesleyan has good, quality players but our guys were up for the task.”
Senior forward Emeka Maduka began the scoring with a goal off an assist from junior defender Gabe Warner in the 19th minute (18:04), which was followed by sophomore forward Omar Kanteh’s goal on an assist by freshman midfielder Adis Islamovic in the 30th minute (29:53), giving the Hornets a 2-0 lead. Maduka scored again in the 41st minute (40:07) on junior midfielder Juan Henao’s assist, making the score 3-0 at halftime. SPSU sophomore forward Avery Shepard concluded the scoring with a goal on an assist from freshman midfielder Samson Nyamunda in the 71st minute (70:29).
Southern Poly had an 11-9 edge in shots, including 6-2 in the first half. In the shots-on-goal department, the Hornets were credited with seven and the Bulldogs none.
For the second straight match, SPSU goalkeepers Dennis Kramer, a senior, and Vincent Easterbrook, a sophomore, combined on a shutout with neither player recording a save. Kramer started and played into the 85th minute before Easterbrook took over for the final 5:46.
Southern Poly hosts its Southern States Athletic Conference opener on Friday with the University of Mobile Rams, who are ranked No. 21 nationally in the NAIA. The contest is set for 2 p.m. at Nuesoft Technologies Field.
Senior Emeka Maduka scores his 4th game winning goal of the season