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Men’s Soccer Extends Streaks with 3-1 Win over Shawnee State

Bluefield College’s men’s soccer team gained sole possession of fifth place in the Mid-South Conference with a 3-1 victory versus Shawnee State University on Saturday evening at the East River Soccer Complex.

Rudy Roediger

October 20, 2012

Erik Albarran

Freshman Erik Albarran set the single-season goal scoring record with his pair of second half goals


BLUEFIELD, W.Va. – Bluefield College’s men’s soccer team gained sole possession of fifth place in the Mid-South Conference with a 3-1 victory versus Shawnee State University on Saturday evening at the East River Soccer Complex.


In doing so, the Rams (8-8-0, 4-4-0 MSC) extended their home win streak to two while improving to 6-2-0 at East River Soccer Complex this season. The win also secured a record breaking fourth conference victory and tied last year’s mark of eight victories overall.


BC is now 3-1-0 in its last four conference matches -- last season the Rams went 1-6-0 in conference play. 


Bluefield used two second half goals to finish off the Bears, who fell to 3-12-0 overall and 3-5-0 in conference play. Freshman Erik Albarran scored his 13th and 14th goals of the season in the second half as the Houston, Texas, native stayed hot with six goals in the last four matches.


SSU did its part to chop up play with 13 fouls and four yellow cards – Shawnee state has been whistled for 23 cautions and two ejections this season.


Bluefield (8-8-0, 4-4-0 MSC) wasted little time taking control, scoring the game’s first goal in just the eighth minute of the game on the first shot of the match.


Sophomore Michael Callaghan netted his fifth goal of the season off a great individual effort down the left flank. After beating a defender his cut-back gave him a look from the center of the pitch. The Belfast, Ireland, native slotted a curling ball into the corner of the goal deflecting off the far post and into the back of the net.


The Rams continued to attack, but couldn’t find their second goal despite out shooting the visitors 6-5 in the opening 45 minutes.


Shawnee State (3-12-0, 3-5-0 MSC) found the equalizer in the 22nd minute when substitute Luke Purpero beat his mark and slotted the ball into the six-yard box for Joe Webster. The 6-foot-2 sophomore flicked the one-time finish past the diving Jefferson Watson to level the game at 1-1.


That score would conclude the opening half scoring with Bluefield holding a slight 6-5 lead in shots and a 1-0 advantage in corner kicks. The Bears were whistled for eight fouls while the Rams were call for just three through the opening 45 minutes.


"We are very fortunate to have a strong lineup from top to bottom", said head coach Peter Dryer. "We have several key players who can both start a game, but also come off the bench and give us solid, quality minutes and we switched a few things around."


Those changes at the break gave Shawnee trouble in the second half as Bluefield allowed just five shots on goal in the entire match as Watson finished with four saves on the day.


In the 61st minute, the Rams used a great combination in the final third to take the lead with a go-ahead goal by freshman Erik Albarran. The build-up start as Andres Palacio received the ball along the right flank. The Bogota, Columbia, native carried the ball forward and found the reigning Mid-South Conference and NCCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Player of the Week, Erik Albarran after a combination play.


Albarran's one-time finish into the far post side netting, the eventual game winner marked his 13th of the season – tying the program’s all-time single season goal scoring record.


An individual effort by Erik Albarran who would help secure a well-earned team victory on the afternoon.


The 5-foot-8 freshman’s pace and change of direction beat two players along the right side in the 87th minute. He found just a small space and used the outside of his opposite foot to crack a perfect strike into the corner of the goal as it dramatically bent past the reach of SSU's goalkeeper Thomas Carbonari to secure the 3-1 victory.


The remarkable goal was fitting to be the one that placed Albarran's spot in the record books for the single-season mark of most goals in a season in Bluefield men's soccer history with 14 goals in 16 games as he passed Eric Pozzani (2007).

Bluefield's effort on the field gave them its eighth victory of the season and takes them to the .500 mark (8-8) for the regular season, while holding a similar percentage in MSC play on the year (4-4).


The Rams will look to take the momentum into the final conference game of the season at the East River Soccer Complex when they host the nation’s No. 1 (NAIA Men’s Soccer Coaches Poll), University of Rio Grande (Ohio) on Wednesday at 7 p.m.


The match marks the second time this season the Rams will face a current No. 1 team. Bluefield faced then No. 1 Lindsey Wilson on Sept. 19 in Columbia, Ky.


Shawn Stanley

Senior Shawn Stanley was recognized prior to the match


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