FAIRFIELD, Conn. (Oct. 18, 2019) - On the outside looking in for a Northeast Conference (NEC) Tournament berth entering Friday's contest, Mount St. Mary's men's soccer hoped to boost their chances against Sacred Heart. But the Pioneers - winless in NEC play coming in - took the early lead but never relented, defeating the Mountaineers by a 3-1 final.
The Mount's record drops to 6-6 (2-2 NEC) on the season.
"Tough loss today." Coach Bryan Cunningham said. "Unfortunately we were chasing the game from the outset after the early goal. We were able to sustain pressure on SHU for the final 45 minutes, but in the end it wasn't enough."
Yann Kouemi scored off a penalty in the second half for his conference leading eighth goal this fall.
The early Sacred Heart goal came off the foot of Segundo Navarro, who had a big day for the Pioneers. Navarro supplied all three goals to earn the hat trick, scoring again in the 51st and 62nd minute.
Mount St. Mary's did their best to level following the first concession. The Mountaineers fired seven shots in the first half, with four on goal. All attempts were snuffed out by Pioneer keeper Robert Strain, including a penalty kick in the 21st minute.
Kouemi did get his revenge in the second half to close the gap to 2-1. But Navarro's hat trick came just minutes later, and all of Mount's shots afterward either fell off-target or were saved.
More challenges await the Mountaineers next weekend with top tier opponents Bryant and Merrimack. They will take on the Bulldogs next Friday (Oct. 25) in Smithfield and the Warriors next Sunday (Oct. 27) in North Andover.