Men’s soccer: Own goal costly in 2-1 VMI loss at Mercer
Playing at even strength for much of the game, the VMI men’s soccer team suffered an own goal that proved to be the difference as host Mercer claimed victory with a 2-1 win Saturday afternoon at Bear Field in Macon, Georgia.
After a scoreless first half, Mercer’s Jordan Duru quickly put the Bears on the board with a goal at the 46:5 5 mark after taking a cross from Mark Riggins.
Just minutes later, the Keydets endured a defensive setback as a defender had the ball bounce off his foot and into the VMI net that provided Mercer the deciding 2-0 advantage. The own goal was VMI’s third of the season as the Keydets suffered two in a recent loss at Wofford.
With 15 minutes remaining in the game, the Keydets got on the scoreboard as freshman Grant Austin headed in a free kick by Hunter Morgan from the right side to cut the lead. Despite a late rush to knot the game, the Bears held out for the 2-1 victory on their home turf.
VMI goalie Alex Guerra picked up the loss despite five saves throughout the game while Jeremy Booth earned the win in the box for Mercer with three saves.
Austin finished the game with two shot attempts while David Harpen, Andrew Starnes and Campbell Wood were each credited with shot attempts for VMI.
The Keydets stay on the road with a Tuesday matchup at UNC Greensboro. Kickoff with the Spartans is scheduled for 7 p.m. in Greensboro, North Carolina.