CAMBRIDGE, MA – Last season's New England Collegiate Conference Men's Soccer Championship between Lesley and Daniel Webster was decided in the final minute of overtime in DWC's favor.
Paul Vasconcelos' team made sure neither overtime nor an Eagles was in the picture Saturday afternoon, putting up two first half goals, holding DWC without a shot on goal all game and adding a late goal for good measure in Lesley's 3-0 blanking of the defending NECC champs.
"It was a great team win. The guys came out and competed today," said Vasconcelos. "I am happy for them and the rest of the staff who prepared so well for today."
Sophomore Ali Sinanis (Guilford, CT/Guilford) struck for his fourth goal from under 10 yards straight on, coming on a feed from Nick Mattox (Pasadena, MD/Chesapeake) at 13:52 to put the Lynx on the board, 1-0. Mattox's second assist led to Sinanis' fourth goal of 2010.
At 32:23, Lesley upped its lead to 2-0 when Tyler Reeves (Coventry, CT/Coventry) found the back of the net from the left wing on a pass from Joseph Petit (Salem, MA/Salem). That was the score at halftime, as Lesley outshot the Eagles 7-2 in spite of being whistled for 13 fouls to only four for the visitors.
While the Lynx offense was clicking at one end, the story of the game, though, was the Lesley defense. Christian Domingo (Granada Hills, CA/Granada Hills), Dallas Eubanks (St. Petersburg, FL/Gibbs), Stephen Siragusa (Valley Stream, NY/Valley Stream) and the Lynx defense made sure a shot never so much as bothered goalkeeper Zachary Almeida-Beers (Rehoboth, MA/Dighton-Rehoboth). Lesley held the defending conference champs to six shots – and more impressively, zero shots on goal.
"Our defense is what enables us to play quick, possession ball and to be dangerous on counter attack," Vasconcelos said.
Petit, Reeves and the Lynx offense, meanwhile, struck a final blow at 68:00. Sophomore Yair Correa (Pawtucket, RI/St. Raphael's Academy) found Petit, who fed Reeves for his fourth score of the season, pulling the curtains on any idea of an Eagles comeback.
Added Vasconcelos, "We hope to carry this through to the rest of our conference matches."
Petit took over the team lead in assists, with three, and Reeves tied Sinanis for second place on the team with four goals. In goal, Almeida-Beers got his league-leading fifth shutout despite never seeing a shot.
Lesley is in action again next Saturday at Elms at 3 p.m.