Men's Soccer Ends Season With 3-0 Home Victory
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Junior Brandon Tarr (Knoxville, Tenn.) scored two goals and junior Pedro Miranda (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) added a goal and an assist, as the Belmont men's soccer team (7-9-2) defeated Eastern Illinois (7-8-1) in the Bruins' season finale on Tuesday night.
"The guys played very well, just as we have all season, and today we took our chances well," Head Coach Earle Davidson said. "Brandon scored too sensational goals and Pedro's goal speaks for itself…it was pretty special."
Tarr's two goals came within five minutes of each other in the first half, receiving long crossing balls from around midfield on both of them. In the 25th minute senior T.J. Brown (Hendersonville, Tenn.) played Tarr a long ball through the defense. The forward then controlled, and beat goalkeeper Tyler Kelley to the goal's opposite upper 90.
In the 29th minute it was Miranda that fed Tarr a long crossing ball. This time Tarr had to carry it a few strides before attempting to beat Kelley. He did again, just from outside the right end of the box, to give Belmont the early 2-0 lead.
The junior's two scores increased his lead in the Belmont record books for most career goals, tallying the 24th and 25th in his three seasons at BU. He ends the season with 10 on the year, surpassing his sophomore year total of seven, and freshman year total of eight to give him a tie for the second best single-season scoring performance in Bruin history.
Both teams started different goalkeepers in the second half, as Evan Turner replaced Kelley for the Panthers and senior Juho Illi (Villahde, Finland) came in for Belmont starter junior Lou Manning (Southlake, Texas). Illi was the only one of the two to finish the game, as Turner was sent off for a deliberate hand ball outside of the box.
The Bruins handled the rest of the match, playing with a man up on Eastern Illinois. Belmont finished off the scoring when Miranda got on the board for the third time this season. Sophomore Nico Olsak (Boca Raton, Fla.) flicked a ball on to Miranda in the box, who then carried the ball through the box, cut back on his defender and placed the ball past Kelley with ease to give Belmont the 3-0 lead in the 70th minute.
Olsak's assist was the eighth for the sophomore this season, matching his mark as a freshman, which ties him again for the most in a single-season at Belmont. The crafty midfielder also tied the career record at BU with tonight's helper. He has 16 assists in his two seasons as a Bruin, matching Paulo Boero's mark from 1992-95.
"We were good," Davidson continued. "We kept good possession of the ball most of the way, and when we did have a lull we got focused and fought our way out of it, which is a really good sign for the future. The guys' confidence is high, and their spirits are good, which showed tonight."
Belmont finishes the 2011 campaign with a record of 7-9-2, its largest win total since 2008's 11-victory season. The Bruins will be back in 2012 to compete for the postseason with plenty of returning talent.