Men's Soccer started their season off on August 31st as they hosted Louisburg College. Looking to build on the momentum from a successful 2018 campaign the Bulldogs entered the game ranked #10 in the preseason poll, but Louisburg would not be denied and scored a last second goal to steal the win.
This young Bulldog squad controlled much of the early play as their skill, athleticism and confidence was evident. But a defensive lapse near the top of the box resulted in a Louisburg goal at the 14 minute mark of the first half. The Bulldogs would answer 14 minutes later as Rafael Barreto would find the back of the net off an pass from Nicolas Millot. The half would end with score knotted 1-1
The second half opened with more of the same, the Bulldogs doing a solid job possessing the ball and Louisburg taking advantage of their openings as they scored their second goal of the game at the 60 minute mark on another defensive mistake by the bulldogs. The Bulldogs began pressing forward and getting their chances, but the Louisburg goalie stood tall and made two stops at point blank range. The Bulldogs went a man down when Rafael Barreto was issued a red card, but that didn't stop them and in the closing minutes Reda Benmostefa netted the equalizer on a cross from Nicolas Milot.
But it was not meant to be. As time was running down, Louisburg made a run and snuck a header past Salvatore Mazza for the win. As expected Nicolas Milot shined with the ball at his feet, dishing off two assists. Salvatore Mazza went the full 90 minutes and made six saves earning praise from Coach Sexton "Salvatore Mazza had a very good game…, He made some very good saves." Freshmen Rafeal Barreto and Reda Benmostefa each scored their first collegiate goals.
Following the game coach Sexton had this to say, "The effort was good, the difficulty is trying to blend so many new players at one time, it is a work in progress, but I can't fault the effort." He added "After giving three easy goals away, we are focusing on our defense in training this week, and having a positive response." The Bulldogs will give that response at home on Saturday 9/7 at 3 pm vs. Patrick Henry Community College.