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Rivera’s Brace Lifts Florida Southern to 3-1 Win at North Greenville in Men’s Soccer

Rene Rivera
Rene Rivera

TIGERVILLE, SC – Sophomore Rene Rivera scored two goals less than six minutes apart before a lengthy weather delay in the first half, and James Smith assisted a pair of goals to lead the Florida Southern men's soccer team to a 3-1 win over North Greenville on Tuesday night.

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • Playing their first road game of the season, the Moccasins (2-0) were able to a take a 2-0 lead with goals by Rivera in the 19th and 25th minutes. Not long after that, the game was halted by inclement weather and put on hold for roughly 2½ hours.
  • When play resumed, that 2-0 score held up for the remainder of the first half before Edward Spansk pushed it to 3-0 in the 64th minute. The Crusaders (0-2) scored in the 66th minute to make it 3-1 but got no closer with the game called after 70 minutes, the minimum needed for an official game.
  • The Moccasins needed a little over one minute to take their first shot and held a 7-2 advantage in that department before play was temporarily stopped around the 35-minute mark. The Mocs scored on two of them, had two others on target but saved, and another one blocked that resulted in a corner kick. Neither of the Crusaders' early shots was on target.
  • The Mocs then out-shot the Crusaders 4-1 in the truncated second half, one of which resulted in Spansk's first goal of the season.
  • Smith assisted Rivera's second goal and the goal by Spansk. Christoph Gums, who had two assists in the season-opener against Shorter on Saturday, assisted the first goal of the night on Tuesday.
  • While facing only five shots in the 70-minute match, freshman goalkeeper Benny Yusufoglu did not have to make a save, with the only on-target shot coming on the goal by Lucas Gravely with 4:56 remaining. James Max Miller had three saves for North Greenville.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

  • Tuesday night's game was the first ever meeting between Florida Southern and North Greenville. It was only the third time the Moccasins have ever played a game in South Carolina (1988 at The Citadel, and an in-season tournament in 1995 at Presbyterian were the others).
  • The Moccasins have started a year 2-0 for the first time since 2011 when they won their first three games (Mount Olive, Savannah Art & Design, and St. Thomas). That was also the last time the Mocs started a season with back-to-back games scoring three or more goals (4-3 win at Mount Olive and 4-0 win vs. Savannah A&D).
  • Rivera had the first multi-goal game of his college career. He was limited to eight games last year, scoring once.
  • Florida Southern has allowed only 10 shots in its first two games. The last time the Mocs did something comparable was in September of 2010 in back-to-back 3-1 wins over Clearwater Christian and Thomas (GA). They allowed three and six respectively in those two games.

UP NEXT

With Hurricane Irma wiping out Friday's home game against Spring Hill (AL), Florida Southern's next scheduled game will be on Tuesday, September 12 at Flagler beginning at 7 p.m., weather permitting.