The Lees-McRae College Bobcats soccer team traveled to Clayton State for the Laker Shootout, opening the weekend with a game against the host Lakers, the number eight team in the country. Rallying from a 0-2 deficit, the Bobcats spoiled the Lakers home opener with a 3-2 win.
The host Lakers got on the board early, posting both of their goals in the game's first twelve minutes. Hailab Habtom put the hosts up just 23 seconds into the game with a 25 yard strike off a cross from Marquintez Jackson. Steve Weston gave the Lakers the early 2-0 lead when he stole the ball at the top of the 18 yard box and buried the ball past Bobcats keeper Dylan Lawrence from 14 yards out.
The Bobcats however, would not roll over and clawed their way back into the game as they settled down at the defensive end of the field while generating quality scoring chances in front of Lakers keeper Heath Padgett. Nathan Wall would find Co-captain Diego Cordiero open in front of the goal in the game's 22nd minute. Cordiero would fire a bullet past Padgett from 25 yards to cut the home side's lead to one.
In the second half, the Bobcats took control. The unranked visitors would tie the game at two apiece on a 35-yard free kick by Berin Boracic in the 65th minute as the Bobcats gained momentum through the second half of play. Kiko Magana would give the Bobcats the 3-2 lead, and the win, off a cross from Michael Lind.
"We started off poorly tonight, however the boys showed much character battling back the way they did against one of the top teams in the country. We are extremely proud of the boys. Hopefully we can use this momentum as a defining moment in our season, and continue our strong play against North Georgia tomorrow," commented Head Coach Chris Whalley after the game.
Padgett recorded three saves in the Laker goal while Lawrence recorded five between the pipes for the Bobcats. The teams combined for 41 fouls with five yellow cards and one red card issued.
With the win, the Bobcats remain undefeated at 2-0-1 while
the Lakers drop to 1-3. The Bobcats return to action tomorrow with
a game against North Georgia at 5:00p.m