NASHVILLE, Tenn.- The Belmont University men's soccer team (2-9-1, 0-3-0) posted a dramatic 3-1 victory over the visiting Georgia State Panthers, Tuesday evening at E.S. Rose Park.
"It was a great result. We had to go through a lot to get it, but it is really exciting to see all of our hard work and the progress we've made turn into a win," said Head Coach Bryan Green.
After Georgia State scored an equalizing goal late in the match, senior Raphael Colmanette's (Sao Paulo, Brazil) goal in the 76th minute proved to be the difference maker in a highly contested match. From the right side just outside of the 18', Colmanette ripped a low lining strike that found its way on frame and past GSU's Greyson Walldorff to make it 2-1 Bruins. The Belmont bench erupted in jubilation as Colmanette scored the eventual game winner and the Bruins were able to fight back after the Panthers had tied it up just seven minutes prior.
BU added some insurance in the 89th when Rashad Hyacenth (D'Abadie, Trinidad and Tobago) tallied his second score of the match. After a GSU foul on Belmont half of the pitch, AJ Arnold (Jackson, Miss.) cleverly played a quick restart and fed a streaking Hyacenth up the left side of the pitch. Hyacenth gained possession over a few GSU defenders and then pushed one past the keeper to give the Bruins the commanding advantage.
Belmont got off to the quick start it was in need of as the sophomore Hyacenth tallied his fourth goal of the season in the 12th minute. Hyacenth was the beneficiary of an excellent feed from teammate Joonas Bask (Espoo, Finland) who provided the assist. Bask received a connecting pass that led him towards the box, the 6'5 forward then dished it far post to Hyacenth who would capitalize to open the scoring.
The Belmont defenders were stingy, and quite effective all evening, as they blanketed the Georgia State attack most of the match, only allowing one goal to squad that came in averaging over two per match. The Panthers entered Tuesday's match touting 2.38 goals per match which ranked them seventh in all of Division I.
Junior netminder Grayson Rector (Peachtree City, Ga.) picked up five saves on the match, and did his part on several occasions to shut down chances by GSU. Rector made superb stops in the 72nd and 80th minutes, respectively, as he kept Belmont right where they needed to be.
The Bruins opened the match as the aggressor, putting pressure and playing a good chunk of the half in their offensive third of the pitch. Along with Hyacenth's successful chance, the Bruins compiled five shot attempts in the first half, the same number of first half shots as Georgia State would tally.
Hyacenth now has notched five goals on the season to lead the Bruins, and has recorded a pair of two-goal performances on the season as his last came in Belmont's last victory which occurred Aug. 28 against Lipscomb.
Both teams peppered double-digit shot attempts as Georgia State would finish with 14 and Belmont 11. GSU put six shots on the frame while Belmont registered five shots on goal.
Belmont has now knocked off Georgia State in consecutive seasons, as it defeated the Panthers 2-0 in Atlanta last season.
Belmont looked to the comfort of home as it played four of its past five matches away from Rose Park. Tuesday's triumph snapped a 10 match winless streak for Belmont and also broke GSU's three-match winning streak.
The Bruins return to action this Saturday, Oct. 10, as they jump back into Horizon League play with a home match against Milwaukee. Match time for Belmont's contest with the Milwaukee Panthers is set for 6 p.m. CT.