BENNINGTON, Vt. – A high-scoring second half led to the Southern Vermont College men's soccer team falling 5-2 to Pine Manor College Sunday afternoon in non-conference men's soccer action at Everett Field.
SVC scored early in each half to lead 2-0 with 35 minutes to go, but the visiting Gators went on to notch five unanswered goals in the remaining time to pull ahead and walk out with the win.
The Mountaineers (2-13-3) play the first of their last two games on Thursday—hosting Rivier University for a 3 p.m. non-conference kickoff.
Pine Manor spent a majority of the first half knocking on the door, but the SVC defense forced most of the Gators' shots to come from afar and miss the target. Only four of the 13 PMC takes landed on frame with a pair of those truly testing Mountaineer junior keeper Joey Wolodkevich (Coxsackie, N.Y.).
Each team took two corner kicks through the opening period, but it was Southern Vermont's first that made a difference in the 10th minute of play. Sophomore Esteban De La Cruz (Granada Hills, Calif.) knocked it from the left side and had his strong hit aided by the wind as it carried over the Pine Manor keeper and into the upper-right corner of the cage. That was his first goal of the year and was the only score of the half as SVC went into the break on top.
It didn't take long into the second frame for De La Cruz to notch his second after the Gators failed to clear it out of their zone. Southern Vermont got the ball and drew a foul in the box—allowing De La Cruz to step up to the dot; he pushed his take into the lower-right corner of the goal as the PMC keeper guessed and dove to the left.
The rest would be all Pine Manor, however, as the Gators tied it up with 13:11 left to play before going in front less than two minutes later. They added a pair of insurance tallies in the remaining 6:07 to secure the victory.
Wolodkevich finished with 11 saves in the loss (0-3).
– #LetsGoSVC –