Bruins Fall to Memphis on the Road in Season Opener
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - - The Belmont men's soccer team dropped its regular season opener, falling to Memphis on the road by a score of 4-0 on Wednesday night. The Bruins fall to 0-1 for the second straight year and are now 1-9 against the Tigers in the all-time series.
"We came out like a young team in the first half, which we are," head coach Earle Davidson said. "They got us on our heels and they took advantage of that early."
The Tigers got off to an early start scoring just 14:33 into the game when Parker Duncan beat Belmont goalkeeper Juho Illi off of a header from JJ Greer. Memphis added to its lead less than 15 minutes later when a Tiger corner kicked was placed well over the box, but deflected to Hugo Mondragon, who finished it for the 2-0 lead.
Illi was forced to make a number of difficult saves in the first half. The junior transfer finished with six in the opening period and six in the entire game. At the half Memphis had outshot Belmont 10-5 and recorded five corner kicks to the Bruins' one.
Belmont came out ready to attack after the break. "We played our game in the second half," Davidson added. "It was similar to the Montevallo scrimmage, where we came out flat, but finished off strong. You can't get away with that against quality Division I competition like Memphis."
Although they never got on the board, the Bruins had plenty of opportunities to get within one score of the Tigers. Belmont's best chance came when freshman Diego Figueroa ripped a shot from outside of the box that beat the keeper, but nailed the cross bar. Just a few minutes later, sophomore Brandon Tarr intercepted a Memphis pass and aimed his shot near post, but the keeper got a hand on it to push it wide.
Belmont gave up the two final scores in the final 15 minutes of play. "We took some chances near the end to try and get back in it, and they took advantage of it," Davidson concluded.
Tarr and junior Dan Meacock ignited the offense throughout the contest, recording three and four shots, respectively. Meacock led the Bruins with two shots on target. Belmont recorded five second half shots to Memphis's six and tallied four second half corners while the Tigers only finished with one.
The Bruins will next continue their road trip at SIU
Edwardsville on Saturday, September 4 at 7:00 p.m. Belmont
returns home for the first time of the regular season on September
10 and 12 to host the Belmont Invitational at the Whitten Soccer