Sept. 4, 2011
MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Missouri State men's soccer team (0-3-0) was unable to notch its first win of the season falling on the road to Memphis (3-0-0), 1-0, Sunday night at Mike Rose Soccer Complex.
Looking to bounce back from consecutive 2-1 losses at home, MSU came out firing from all cylinders. For majority of the opening minutes, the Bears kept the ball in Memphis territory and controlled the offensive front. After 15 minutes of play, they had outshot the Tigers 6-0.
"There were a lot of aspects of the game that went very well," head coach Jon Leamy said. "We got ahold of the ball, we generated some good possessions and had some shot opportunities, but we didn't put the ball in the back of the net."
Statistically, heading into the break, the Bears had an advantage on the offensive side of the ball with eight shots, five shots on goal and five corner kicks. Memphis managed to get off three shots, one on goal and one corner kick.
After intermission, the scoreless match contiunued well into the second half until a miscommunication in the Bears' defense. In the 72nd minute, Memphis midfielder Mark Sherrod capitalized on a ball that got through the MSU backfield, breaking away for a one-on-one opportunity with redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Trevor Spangenberg. Sherrod put the ball past Spangenberg and into the net for the game-winning goal and his third goal of the season.
"We made a mistake in the second half that led to some breakdowns and it cost us the goal," Leamy said. "The team is going to get better. We just need to eliminate those [breakdowns] and the team has made a commitment to fix it."
With the shutout on the line, things began to get a bit rough on the field, as five yellow cards were given in the final 20 minutes of regulation.
The Bears outshot the the Tigers, 12-9, with half of the shot attempts on target. Seniors Gerard Barbero, Jordan Hoffman and Heath Melugin led the way with two shots apiece.
Missouri State will continue its road stand, traveling to Albuquerque, N.M. for the TLC Plumbing, Heating and Cooling Lobo Invitational. The Bears will face Cal. State-Northridge on Sept. 9 at 6 p.m., followed by a contest with Columbia University on Sept. 11 at 11:30 a.m.