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Furman Shoots Past Belmont In SoCon Quarterfinals, 4-2

Emery May
Emery May

Greenville, S.C. -- Emery May netted a pair of goals to ignite a four-goal outburst as No. 3 seed Furman downed No. 6 seed Belmont, 4-2, in the quarterfinal round of the Southern Conference Men's Soccer Championship Saturday night on Seagraves Field at Stone Soccer Stadium.

The victory advanced Furman, 11-6-1 on the season, to a semifinal showdown with No. 2 seed ETSU on Friday at 6 p.m. at Summers-Taylor Stadium in Johnson City, Tenn. The Bruins finished their season at 4-12-2.

"It's always good to get the victory this time of year, especially at home," said Paladin head coach Doug Allison. "We took our chances well tonight and scored some nice goals. We'll build on that and prepare for the trip to ETSU."

Furman wasted little time taking control of the match grabbing a 1-0 lead at the 1:49 mark. Danny Kierath back-heeled a pass to Cole McLagan down the right wing and the forward sent a cross into the box that May blasted past Belmont goalkeeper Nicolo Dini to open the scoring.

In the 28th minute, Kierath fed a pass to McLagan on the right side of the box and the sophomore ripped a shot into the left side netting to double the lead.

Belmont cut the lead in half just before the hour mark on Esteban Lestido's goal following a corner kick, but Laurence Wyke's low, driven shot to the left-hand corner restored the two-goal cushion at 65:49. May added an insurance goal less than eight minutes later by nodding a Conor Sloan cross past Dini from close range at 73:16 for his second goal of the night and seventh on the season.

Matteo Bennati added a late tally for the Bruins with under seven minutes to play for the final 4-2 margin.

Goalkeeper Ben Hale stopped five shots to earn the victory for Furman, while Dini turned away seven shots for Belmont.

The Paladins fashioned a 22-13 edge in total shots and 13-7 advantage in shots on goal to claim their second 4-2 triumph versus Belmont this season.

2018 SoCon Men's Soccer Championship
First Round, Wednesday, Oct. 31
Campus sites (at higher seeds)
Match 1: No. 6 Belmont 2, No. 7 VMI 1

Quarterfinals, Saturday, Nov. 3
Campus sites (at higher seeds)
Match 2: #5 UNCG 1, #4 Wofford 0
Match 3: #3 Furman 4, #6 Belmont 2

Championship Semifinals, Friday, Nov. 9
Johnson City, Tenn.
Match 4: #5 UNCG vs. #1 Mercer, 3:30 p.m.
Match 5: #3 Furman vs. #2 ETSU, 6 p.m.

Finals, Saturday No. 4
Johnson City, Tenn.
Match 6: Winner of match #4 vs. Winner of match #5, 1 p.m.