LYNCHBURG, Va. - Sophomore Ricky Garbanzo scored twice and junior Matt Risher added a goal to lead the No. 18 Coastal Carolina men's soccer team to a decisive 3-0 victory over rival Liberty in Lynchburg, Va., on Wednesday evening.
The win moves the Chanticleers, who are unbeaten in their last six games, to 5-1-2 (2-0-0, Big South) on the season as the Flames drop to 1-1-0 in Big South play and 2-4-0 overall.
Coastal wasted little time getting on the scoreboard after maintaining possession early. Risher received a through ball near the end line where he took two touches and launched a perfect cross toward the box. Garbanzo, who was streaking from the middle of the field, was able to rise above the Liberty defense and head the ball home. The seventh-minute goal was Garbanzo's third of the season, while the assist was the first for Risher in a Chanticleer uniform.
The Chants found the net eight minutes later off the foot of Garbanzo. Ashton Bennett ignited the scoring play with a shot in front of the goal. Liberty's Scott Sutarik was able to save Bennett's attempt but not hang onto the ball. Garbanzo collected the loose ball on the right edge of the '18 and uncorked a blast toward the far post. The goal marked Garbanzo's first multi-goal game of his career.
Liberty produced a prime scoring opportunity in the 32nd minute; however, Federico Bertele stood strong and denied the attempt. Liberty's Sam Duininck got a solid strike on the ball in traffic, but Bertele was able to get his right hand on the ball and knock it harmlessly out of bounds.
Risher provided Coastal with a 3-nil lead 20 seconds into the second half. The initial kickoff was deflected off a Flames defender and to the foot of Garbanzo. The sophomore forward proceeded to feed the ball ahead to Risher near the top of the '18. Liberty's keeper came out of the net to challenge Risher; however, the Charlotte, N.C., product hammered the ball past the keeper to the far post for his first goal of the season.
With 18:12 to play in the contest Bertele again proved why he owns a sub-one goals against average. A well-placed Flames' cross was headed toward the goal by Austin Wyman, but Bertele was there with a leaping save to tip the ball over the cross bar.
The Chanticleers finished with an 18-9 advantage in shots and 6-4 edge in shots on frame. Bertele was credited with his second clean sheet of the season to improve to 3-1-2 on the campaign.
Coastal steps back out of conference play on Saturday, Sept. 22 as hosts to UNC Greensboro at the CCU Soccer Field. Kickoff for the contest is set for 7 p.m. Coastal trails 6-9-2 in the all-time series with UNC Greensboro.
Meanwhile, Liberty steps out of conference to host the Richmond Spiders, Tuesday. Match time is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Campus East Fields. It will be the first meeting between the teams since 1993.
Winthrop Falls 4-2 At College Of Charleston
CHARLESTON, SC- In less than a five minute span in the second half, College of Charleston scored three goals to hand Winthrop a 4-2 loss, Wednesday evening in men's soccer non-conference action.
The Eagles (2-4) trailed 1-0 at the break and had a corner kick in the 55th minute that the Cougars cleared and less than 30 seconds made it 2-0 at the other end. Tam McGowan played a ball down the left side as Sean de Silva collected the pass and served the ball into the box where Shawn Ferguson cracked a volley into the back of the net. It was his first goal of the season.
In the 58th minute, CofC (4-4) struck again as Sam Redmond scored his first of the season. Redmond created some space of his own as he cut off the dribble toward the middle of the field just outside the box and ripped a shot to the far post for the goal. The fourth goal came just over a minute later as de Silva was able to finish after receiving a cross from Kattreh in the 60th minute.
Winthrop got on the board in the 67th minute as Mason Lavallet netted his team-leading fourth goal of the season as he was set up by Achille Obougou on a cross. Winthrop added another goal late as Marc Segarra scored his second of the season in the 88th minute. The ball rattled around in the box and Segarra was able to retrieve it and place a shot into the goal.
The Cougars got on the board early on as they ended a streak of around 290 minutes without a goal in the second minute thanks to Tony Kattreh. CofC played the ball into the box, but the Eagle defenders were unable to clear the ball as Kattreh collected and his shot found the back of the net for the 1-0 lead.
CofC finished with an 18-11 shot advantage and 7-2 edge on corners.
Tom Banfield started in net for the Eagles as he made five saves while his counterpart Kees Heemskerk made three saves.
After five straight games away from home, the Eagles return home as they will host East Tennessee State Saturday evening as kickoff is set for 7 p.m.