Nov. 2, 2012
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PORTLAND - Sean Sears scored 48 seconds into play, Juan De Rada tallied the game-winner in the 59th minute and the LMU men's soccer team held on for a 2-1 win over West Coast Conference rival Portland Friday at Merlo Field.
The Lions moved to 4-10-3 overall and 2-5-2 in WCC play while the Pilots fell to 6-9-1 on the season and 4-5-0 in league action.
Sears put the Lions on the board less than a minute into the match with a strike from 12 yards out. A double assist was credited on the goal as the play began with a long punt from keeper Paul Blanchette that Pedro Velazquez tipped along to Sears. The teams battled evenly over the ensuing balance of the period as the Pilot earned a slight 10-7 shot advantage.
LMU's Blanchette turned away four Portland shots in the 45-minute period while UP's Justin Baarts had three saves.
Portland would not be outdone by the Lions' early goal, however, as Dustin Munger tallied the equalizer at the 44:58 mark with an 18-yard shot that nicked off the crossbar and into the net. Assists went to Michael Escobar and Mitchell Lurie.
The Pilots had nine shots to LMU's two in the second period, but the Lions made their final shot count. In the 59th minute, John McFarlin fed De Rada who sent a 16-yard shot past the reach of Baarts to give LMU the 2-1 lead.
The victory broke a five-match winless streak for the Lions, and comes on the heels of a 1-1 draw against San Francisco on Oct. 28, which snapped a four-match losing streak.
The Lions look to build their first win streak of the season, and close out their final roadtrip of 2012 in a positive note, when they take on Gonzaga Sunday at noon in Spokane.