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Knights fall to Mercer County CC 2-1
The 2012 CCRI men’s soccer team kicked-off a soccer double header at the Flanagan Campus. The noon start on a beautiful day welcomed both teams to perfect conditions. Knights Head Coach Gabe Toro and Assistant Kevin Berthiaume returned to coach the Knights in 2012. With returners that include Co-Captain Manny Alves (Pawtucket, RI), Damon Georgiou (Portsmouth, RI) and Servi Barrientos (Providence, RI) make their return to the midfield and Chris Munoz (Talcahuano, Chili) and Chris Lopes (Pawtucket, RI) return to shape the defensive foundation of the team.
Coach Toro scheduled this game with Mercer because they have a great program and he wanted to start of the year with a tough schedule to challenge his players early. The game started with freshman keeper Rob Gallucci (Coventry, RI) anchoring a strong defensive unit. Coach Toro commented after the game “All four defenders played a solid game and were impressive throughout the match.” That unit included: Ian Duncan (Barrington, RI) and Preston Kar (Providence, RI) who played the outside backs with Chris Munoz and Marvin Gutierrez (Central Falls, RI) controlling the center of the pitch. A combination of experience, hard work and execution made the defensive line difficult to penetrate for the Vikings.
The Knights opened up the scoring with sophomore striker Prince Tahyor (Providence, RI) who capitalized on a mistake by the Vikings and sprinted on to the ball and put it passed the Vikings goalkeeper at the 17th minute of the first half to give the Knights a 1-0 lead. The Knights were able to pass the ball and control most of the possession, something that Coach Toro prepares them to do daily in practices. Unfortunately after a questionable call by the official, Mercer was awarded a penalty kick as Knights’ keeper Gallucci had to leave the game because the Mercer forward smashed his knee into the Knight goalkeeper during the play and the referee asked him to leave because of blood on his jersey from being hit in the face. Rob was brave in attacking the ball and the referee gave the call to the offense. While trainers attended to Gallucci, Derek Soares (Pawtucket, RI) stepped-up to replace him. Soares’ first responsibility once in the game was to block the penalty kick, which is not the best scenario to step into as a goalkeeper. Mercer was able to score the kick and tied the game 1-1.
In the second half the Knights made some lineup changes and also changed their formation towards the last 15 minutes of the game. Despite the good effort and quality of play the Knights gave up another goal on a free kick with four minutes left in the game giving the visiting team the 2-1 victory. Overall, Coach Toro was happy with the team’s performance.
The Knights are looking forward to playing their next game when they host the Cougars of Manchester Community College from Manchester, CT for a Region XXI non-league game in Lincoln, RI this Wednesday, September 5, 2012 at 4:00pm.
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England’s largest comprehensive community college, enrolls 17,760 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.